Rafa Roundup: “Watching Rafa play at Roland Garros to me is like watching your favourite movie”

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“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.”

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.”

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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9 comments

  1. This morning I read that Roger Federer was considering pulling out of the French Open after his 4 set victory against Koepfer and so I immediately went to view the press conference that he attended last night after his win… Listening to Roger describe the pros and cons of remaining in the tournament brought without question a bit of sadness within me, as it was clear that the grind of a 5 set tournament might be too much for him physically and that depending upon how he felt this morning would determine if he would go forward into the next round of the French Open… I love it when Roger plays… Of course I want Rafa to always win, but Roger Federer adds class to any tournament he attends…. I remember hearing that after his second surgery he contemplated beginning his comeback at the AO…and I thought to myself …wow…you’re going to start a comeback at a 5 set hardcourt tournament? and I’m glad that he decided otherwise….

    Anyway…. Much to my sadness, Roger has announced a few minutes ago that he will not move forward at Roland Garros…. He has wiithdrawn…

    Get the rest you need Roger … I look forward to hearing how you do in Halle…and then of course watching you at Wimbledon.

  2. Still making phenomenal shots…still mesmerizing….great rewind-🙏 Enjoy Rafa on court-just learned of Roger’s decision-all the best to him.🎾❤️

  3. @Scorpio1641 retweeted Nick Zaccardi’s tweet of Rafa’s interview by Bud Collins in June 2005. This was Rafa’s first Roland-Garros title win.
    Scroll to the 21h area.

  4. Sweet sentiment from Burgsmuller. He has a claim to fame by being a part of Rafa’s incredible history.

    Vika always has an interesting way of expressing herself. Wonderful to see her playing so well at R.G. Would love to see her take the title this year. Ladies and gentlemen your 2021 French Open Winners: Rafa and Vika!

    • Oh no. She just lost. So disappointed. No longer following WTA portion of the tournament.

      Vamos Rafa!

  5. Well don Rafa congratulations keep going to the finals vamossssssssss champ all the love from your fans 💪💪💪❤️❤️❤️👍🇺🇸

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