- Rafael Nadal Stat ‘Not Many People Know’ Is ‘Vital’ Behind His Success, Says Chris Evert | Eurosport
“Rafa is showing a more all-court game in the last few years. Even though he is the greatest ever on clay, he still wants to improve and he is still learning a lot of shots,” Evert told Eurosport.
“His touch is much better, he is serving much bigger. But the stat I like about Rafa – not many people know this – in the first three shots in a point, he makes those three shots over 90 per cent of the time.
“That’s what I think you have to tell the juniors these days: the first three shots are vital and look at Rafa can do and that is one of the reasons he is just so consistent.”
- The First of Nadal’s 100 French Open Victims Has His Say | The New York Times
Lars Burgsmüller remembers telling himself he could beat Rafael Nadal on the red clay at the French Open.
“I thought if I play my game, maybe I have a chance,” Burgsmüller said, recalling that windswept afternoon in late May 2005. “Maybe I can pull off the win.”
“At the time, that was just another match for me,” he said. “I was disappointed to lose. But now when I look back, I can see that I was part of an important moment. Nadal really started with that match, on that date, and I was the one he played.
“It’s a nice bit of history.”
- Nadal v Norrie: Things We Learned | Roland Garros
Not only has Nadal won through to the second week without the loss of a single set, he hasn’t dropped a set in Paris since the 2019 final against Dominic Thiem.
The four-time defending Roland-Garros champion stretched his streak of consecutive sets won to 32 against Norrie.
Remarkably, Nadal has only needed a tiebreaker three times to win those 32 sets, and he has only dropped five games in a set on two other occasions. In 14 of the 32 sets, he has dropped two games or less.
The Mallorcan has now won 33 consecutive matches at Roland-Garros, a streak that dates back to his loss to Novak Djokovic in the 2015 quarter-finals.
VIDEO: On his 35th birthday, a tribute to the mind-blowing talent of Rafael Nadal!
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