Novak Djokovic v Rafael Nadal: French Open 2021 semi-final – are living!

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3.15pm EDT15:15

3rd set: *Djokovic 1-1, 6-3, 3-6 Nadal (* denotes server): The TV graphic confirmed Novak did smartly in retaining issues clear of Nadal’s all-world forehand in the second one set. Rafa most effective hit 45% of his pictures off that wing in the second one in comparison to the bulk (code for I didn’t see the precise proportion) within the first. So there you move: to overcome Nadal simply don’t hit it to his forehand. I’ll take a look at it subsequent time I play him, must paintings a attraction. A easy sufficient cling for Djokovic.

3.11pm EDT15:11

3rd set: Djokovic 0-1, 6-3, 3-6 Nadal* (* denotes server): Hoo hoo! That is amusing. No longer that the lovers courtside would possibly see it – they have got to depart the stadium in two hours on account of Covid protocols. However, as Parisians are a laidback bunch who undoubtedly like being instructed what to do, I’m positive it’ll move off with no less than fuss. Rafa was once off courtroom all over the wreck, I’m now not positive what for, however he appears to be transferring smartly sufficient. Possibly it was once a rest room wreck? He additionally modified his shorts however let’s now not move too a long way down the street of hypothesis on that matter or some unsightly psychological pictures may arise.
Anyway, no matter took place Rafa appears to be doing wonderful and holds to fifteen. The most efficient solution after Novak’s wonderful comeback in the second one set.

3.02pm EDT15:02

Djokovic wins the second one set 6-3!

Djokovic serves for the set. No longer one thing I’d have concept I’d be writing when he was once 0-5 down within the first. He begins with an enormous forehand on a ball that sits up well for him. Nadal makes it 15-30 with a gorgeous dipping backhand to win some degree it appeared like he would misplaced when Djokovic had him scurrying round courtroom, and shortly we’re at 30-40. Rafa thinks he’s gained it with a backhand down the road nevertheless it drifts simply out. A mis-hit forehand from Rafa then seals the set for Novak. What a comeback!

Roland-Garros
(@rolandgarros)
Are you now not entertained⁉️#RolandGarros | @RafaelNadal percent.twitter.com/47FbyTDavh

June 11, 2021

2.54pm EDT14:54

2d set: Djokovic 5-3, 3-6 Nadal* (* denotes server): Nadal was once chatting with the physician and instructor on the wreck between video games nevertheless it’s unclear what he was once asking about. Possibly the Turkey-Italy rating (comic story is on him – it hasn’t began but). I’ll stay you up to date if I to find out extra. Anyway, he’s serving to stick within the set. And wager what? He does.

2.49pm EDT14:49

2d set: *Djokovic 5-2, 3-6 Nadal (* denotes server): Novak assists in keeping making an attempt the drop shot and assists in keeping on failing. I’m now not positive why he persists – except he’s taking part in an overly lengthy sport and seeking to put on Rafa out. A nasty unforced error (are there any excellent ones?) from Novak sends us to 15-40. Speaking of horrible pictures – Nadal hits a house run ball of a backhand waaaay lengthy and we’re at deuce. Novak looks as if he’s about to carry up benefit however he sends a easy volley – with the courtroom gaping open – into the online. He holds finally however most effective simply.

2.37pm EDT14:37

2d set: Djokovic 4-2, 3-6 Nadal* (* denotes server): And we proceed on serve. Novak can console himself that he’s a lot better than when he was once 0-5 down within the first set. A fantastic backhand winner – his 5th of the fit – will get him to 15-0 and some other backhand units up a volley for 0-30. Without a doubt the fit has been beautiful even after that opening blip from Djokovic. Ahead of we are aware of it, Novak has made it 0-40 – he obviously isn’t going to throw this so he can get again to his area and catch the second-half of Turkey v Italy on the Euros. Talking of which:

Rafa reasons a couple of wobbles for Novak as he brings it again to 30-40 however the Serb seals it subsequent level to damage.

2.27pm EDT14:27

2d set: Djokovic 2-2, 3-6 Nadal* (* denotes server): Breaking Nadal on the French Open should be a wonderful feeling. In an instant getting damaged again, now not such a lot. There’s principally 0 Kelvins room for error should you’re taking part in Rafa on the French Open in order that blip within the remaining sport was once now not excellent (even if Rafa hit some unbelievable pictures so it’s tricky accountable Novak totally). Novak roars in frustration as he nets to offer Rafa the cling. You’ll be able to know how he feels. Or perhaps you’ll’t should you’ve by no means performed in a grand slam semi-final.

2.22pm EDT14:22

2d set: *Djokovic 2-1, 3-6 Nadal (* denotes server): Proper. “Enough of that comeback nonsense***,” says Nadal. He streaks to 0-40 after which seals the sport with a sizzling forehand down the road. That was once so rapid I ignored the primary few issues whilst I seemed for some fascinating stats on Twitter, so I didn’t want to trouble calculating any myself. That’ll train me.
***He won’t have actually mentioned this.

2.19pm EDT14:19

2d set: Djokovic 2-0, 3-6 Nadal* (* denotes server): The mini Djokonaissance continues as Novak races out to a 0-40 lead. Nadal saves the primary one with a dirty drop shot that Novak can most effective grin at. Or perhaps he was once grinning as a result of he knew what was once coming subsequent – a large forehand from Nadal that seals the wreck. Issues simply were given (extra) fascinating.

A jumping Novak Djokovic returns to Rafael Nadal. {Photograph}: Ian Langsdon/EPA

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at 2.54pm EDT

2.13pm EDT14:13

2d set: *Djokovic 1-0, 3-6 Nadal (* denotes server)
A welcome, early cling for Djokovic to begin the second one. It’s to like too.
Arun Narayanan writes in: “An interesting question to ponder is what type of a player can defeat Nadal at the French Open?” um… person who doesn’t exist? “I know Djokovic defeated Nadal once, but something was obviously wrong there since Nadal didn’t win even win a set and lost the last one 1-6. I suggest that you cannot outslug Nadal at the French Open; so, Djokovic’s usual style arguably works against him. You need someone who plays really aggressively, someone who can hit really aggressively, strong, and fast. That is, someone who can hit through him and paint the lines. Someone like Thiem who at least managed to take a set off him. Or, someone like Soderling who won. Someone like Wawrinka could have done it maybe. Of course, easier said than done, unless Nadal is not fully fit, as in his two losses here. After all, Federer never quite managed anything more than taking an odd set or two, even when Nadal was a 19-year-old kid.”

2.09pm EDT14:09

Nadal wins the primary set 6-3!

A moment probability for Nadal to clinch the set on his serve. This time issues are a lot more uncomplicated, the spotlight being what I will be able to most effective describe as a half-volley on the web that turns right into a lob: too excellent for Novak, too excellent for any individual (which is apparent as a result of if Djokovic couldn’t go back that, who may?). Rafa just about seals the set with some other lob nevertheless it is going simply lengthy – Rafa possibly responsible of a bit of little bit of showboating there. And it prices him as a result of Djokovic takes the following level and we’re at deuce. Or prices him for some time as a result of Nadal wins the set now not lengthy afterwards.
Novak confirmed simply sufficient against the tip of the set to turn he can harm Rafa. The unhealthy information? Rafa hasn’t ever misplaced on the French Open after profitable the primary set.

Rafael Nadal serves. {Photograph}: Christian Hartmann/Reuters

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at 2.55pm EDT

2.02pm EDT14:02

First set: *Djokovic 3-5 Nadal (* denotes server): Novak takes the momentum from that wreck and … loses his first two provider issues. A pleasing restoration to take it to 30-30 although, the second one level coming from his first ace of the fit. Rafa then brings up wreck level however a difficult forehand from Novak saves it – and the Spaniard faucets his racket to recognize a wonderful shot. Novak holds – it could had been beautiful dispiriting to have damaged then in an instant had been damaged again.
I’m wondering what different grand slams do after they’re now not webhosting and nobody cares about them? Looks as if they only tweet concerning the different ones.

US Open Tennis
(@usopen)
NADAL. DJOKOVIC.👏 HERE 👏 FOR 👏 IT percent.twitter.com/Hj6zBC6Fww

June 9, 2021

Wimbledon
(@Wimbledon)
The remaining Grand Slam semi-final between Nadal and Djokovic was once particular 💫#Wimbledon percent.twitter.com/14qu2d1zMl

June 11, 2021

1.56pm EDT13:56

First set: Djokovic 2-5 Nadal* (* denotes server): And Rafa serves for the set. Some excellent information for Novak as he’s taking the primary two issues, the second one courtesy of the online wire. You’ll be able to inform issues are having a look up for Djokovic when a drop shot in fact works – Nadal can’t get anyplace close to it. Rafa wrongfoots his opponent to save lots of the primary wreck level prior to an extended forehand takes us to deuce. Rafa then drops a double fault for the wreck. Nadal will nonetheless most probably win this set however some comfort for Novak as he displays there are methods of injuring the champ.

1.45pm EDT13:45

First set: *Djokovic 1-5 Nadal (* denotes server): Some aid for Novak! And a few aid for the ones folks who need to see one thing such as a competition. No bagel for Novak as a forehand into the online provides him his first sport of the fit.

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at 1.46pm EDT

1.40pm EDT13:40

First set: Djokovic 0-5 Nadal* (* denotes server): That is quite simple for Rafa nowadays: he doesn’t want do an excessive amount of except for play competently and look ahead to Novak’s errors. Every other at ease cling for the reigning champion.

ATP Excursion
(@atptour)
The 13-time champ isn’t losing any time as of late 😯🎥: @rolandgarros | @RafaelNadal percent.twitter.com/FwoWOrPWid

June 11, 2021

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at 1.41pm EDT

1.36pm EDT13:36

First set: *Djokovic 0-4 Nadal (* denotes server): Novak’s first two first serves are lengthy and he follows them up with forehands that experience a bit of an excessive amount of on them to offer Rafa a 0-30 benefit – his 9th level in a row. An excessively deficient forehand dumped into the online provides Nadal the sport. Rafa is hard sufficient on clay whilst you’re taking part in smartly, however whilst you’re giving him issues…

1.29pm EDT13:29

First set: Djokovic 0-3 Nadal* (* denotes server): Whilst Djokovic has struggled for essentially the most phase together with his drop shot, Nadal is undoubtedly now not. He wafts one simply over the online, it hits the wire at the excess of, to succeed in 40-0. A very simple cling, a lot more at ease than his opening provider sport.

1.27pm EDT13:27

First set: *Djokovic 0-2 Nadal (* denotes server): Every other deuce sport! It seems find it irresistible’s drifting against a very simple Novak cling till a sizzling 100mph winner from Nadal sends us to 40-30 and injects slightly of pep into court cases. Novak then tries a drop shot that isn’t excellent sufficient for Rafa who anticipates and dinks a forehand previous the Serb to carry up wreck level. He seals the wreck on the first alternative.
So, two deuce video games to begin the fit. Looks as if we’re going previous curfew!

1.20pm EDT13:20

First set: Djokovic 0-1 Nadal* (* denotes server): And Rafa will serve first. And does: now not the best of begins as he dumps his first serve into the online after which sends a forehand lengthy to to present the primary level to his opponent. Then a gorgeous little rally with Novak fending all forms of Rafa forehands on the web prior to his opponent wears him down to visit 30-15. However Novak battles again to carry up the primary wreck level of the fit – within the first sport. Rafa saves with a serve however a whipped forehand from Novak brings up some other alternative to damage and some other ace from Rafa to put it aside! A super show of nerveless tennis from Rafa there to hit the ones two aces when he wanted them maximum. An ideal drop shot from Djokovic seems find it irresistible’s arrange a possibility at a wreck level however he slams a very simple overhead lengthy and the following level seals the sport for Nadal.

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at 1.20pm EDT

1.05pm EDT13:05

As a result of Covid restrictions, the gang want to depart in simply over 3 hours if the fit remains to be occurring. It took place in Djokovic’s remaining fit, the place the gang booed as they had been turfed out. I’m positive they’ll be happy if they’re requested to depart at two-sets all. Maaaaybe they must have put this fit on first – with all due recognize to Zverev and Tsitsipas.

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at 1.07pm EDT

1.02pm EDT13:02

Djokovic has overwhelmed Nadal right here prior to and now not that way back – in 2015 within the quarter-finals (at the Spaniard’s birthday too). Djokovic didn’t even want to wreck an excessive amount of of a sweat that day, beating Rafa in immediately units. In fact, Djokovic went directly to lose to Stan Wawrinka within the last however he’ll be seeking to visualise that quarter-final win as he steps out directly to courtroom as of late.

12.56pm EDT12:56

The winner of this night’s fit will play Stefanos Tsitsipas within the last. He’s simply overwhelmed in 5 units, which I’m legally obliged to name an “epic”. Right here’s what the 22-year-old needed to say after attaining his first grand slam last.
“All I can think of is my roots, where I came from,” he says, after changing into the primary Greek participant to succeed in a grand slam last. “My dream was to play here, to play on the big stage of the French Open some day. I would have never thought that I would.”

12.17pm EDT12:17

Preamble

And so right here we’re – the inevitable last, except for it’s the semi-final. The five-setter within the different semi-final manner we’re beginning a tad later that anticipated – unhealthy information for Novak and Rafa in the event that they sought after to tuck into a place of Turkey v Italy within the Euros, however there you move.
Novak leads this pair’s head-to-head conferences however most effective simply – 29-28. It’s a special tale on clay although, the place Rafa, as chances are you’ll be expecting holds a 19-7 benefit.

ATP Media Information
(@ATPMediaInfo)
By means of the Numbers: @RafaelNadal vs. @DjokerNoleDjokovic 29-28 OverallDjokovic 23-17 Best possible-of-3-SetsDjokovic 15-13 FinalsDjokovic 16-13 ATP Masters 1000sTied 7-7 #ATPMasters1000 FinalsNadal 19-7 ClayNadal 9-4 Clay FinalsNadal 6-3 @InteBNLdItaliaNadal 4-2 Rome Finals#IB21

Might 16, 2021

Nadal is the favorite right here however as this newsletter at the ATP web site main points, his opponent has been higher in power scenarios at this 12 months’s match. Novak has stored 86% of wreck issues he’s confronted, whilst Rafa’s fee is unusually low at 50%. It’s a equivalent tale in wreck issues transformed, the place Novak has the brink 63% to 49.3%. After which it’s been a lovely excellent week for Serbian sports activities superstars with Nikola Jokic profitable the NBA’s most respected participant award. And if that feels like I’m clutching at straws searching for indicators of an disappointed, it’s as a result of I’m.

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