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Rafa’s Dirty Dozen And More

UbiTennis takes a closer look at Nadal’s extraordinary record on the clay!

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That Rafael Nadal is the greatest of all time on clay is undeniable – even Borg’s own mother must have come to terms with it by now. 

 

No one, man or woman, has ever managed to win the same Slam 12 times. No one, except for him, who managed the feat in Paris, ça va sans dire.

Without the pandemic, the Spaniard could have celebrated his birthday, as usual, in his home away from home (a home with a roof now, and retractable too), and perhaps he could have taken another step forward, tasting that Slam-tally supremacy (albeit shared) he’s been chasing his entire life. Who knows whether fate will give him other chances – only time will tell.

There is another statistical nugget though, more subtle and neglected, that asserts, with even greater emphasis, his might and his undisputed dominance on the surface. Said nugget is that, over a 15-year span, Rafa has played 120 3-out-of-5 matches, including those at the Bois de Boulogne, the old Davis Cup (we miss you so!), a few Masters Series finals, and more.

Well, his record in these matches is the following: 118 wins and 2 losses. 118-2.

In my opinion, this is the most impressive achievement in the history of the game BC (Before Covid), and thus deserves to be handed down to posterity as my personal birthday gift.

To all fans, have a nice read!

2004

  1. Davis SF Clement (65) W 64 61 62
  2. Davis F Roddick (2) W 67(6) 62 76(6) 62

2005

  1. Montecarlo F Coria (9) W 63 61 06 75
  2. Barcellona F Ferrero (58) W 61 76(4) 63
  3. Roma F Coria (11) W 64 36 63 46 76(6)
  4. RG R128 Burgsmuller (96) W 61 76(4) 61
  5. RG R64 Malisse (46) W 62 62 64
  6. RG R32 Gasquet (31) W 64 63 62
  7. RG R16 Grosjean (24) W 64 36 60 63
  8. RG QF Ferrer (21) W 75 62 60
  9. RG SF Federer (1) W 63 46 64 63
  10. RG F Puerta (37) W 67(6) 63 61 75
  11. Stoccarda F Gaudio (13) W 63 63 64
  12. Davis P.O. Bracciali (92) W 63 62 61
  13. Davis P.O. Seppi (78) W 61 62 57 64

2006

  1. Montecarlo F Federer (1) W 62 67(2) 63 76(5)
  2. Barcellona F Robredo (15) W 64 64 60
  3. Roma F Federer (1) W 67(0) 76(5) 64 26 76(5)
  4. RG R128 Soderling (50) W 62 75 61
  5. RG R64 Kim (116) W 62 61 64
  6. RG R32 Mathieu (32) W 57 64 64 64
  7. RG R16 Hewitt (14) W 62 57 64 62
  8. RG QF Djokovic (63) W 64 64 RET
  9. RG SF Ljubicic (4) W 64 62 76(7)
  10. RG F Federer (1) W 16 61 64 76(4)
  11. Davis P.O. Seppi (69) W 60 64 63
  12. Davis P.O. Volandri (38) W 36 75 63 63

2007

  1. RG R128 Del Potro (59) W 75 63 62
  2. RG R64 Cipolla (227) W 62 61 64
  3. RG R32 Montanes (50) W 61 63 62
  4. RG R16 Hewitt (16) W 63 61 76(5)
  5. RG QF Moya (26) W 64 63 60
  6. RG SF Djokovic (6) W 75 64 62
  7. RG F Federer (1) W 63 46 63 64

2008

  1. RG R128 Bellucci (76) W 75 63 61
  2. RG R64 Devilder (148) W 64 60 61
  3. RG R32 Nieminen (26) W 61 63 61
  4. RG R16 Verdasco (23) W 61 60 62
  5. RG QF Almagro (20) W 61 61 61
  6. RG SF Djokovic (3) W 64 62 76(3)
  7. RG F Federer (1) W 61 63 60
  8. Davis SF Querrey (39) W 67(5) 64 63 64
  9. Davis SF Roddick (8) W 64 60 64

2009

  1. Davis 1st RD Tipsarevic (47) W 61 60 62
  2. Davis 1st RD Djokovic (3) W 64 64 61
  3. RG R128 M. Daniel (97) W 75 64 63
  4. RG R64 Gabashvili (72) W 61 64 62
  5. RG R32 Hewitt (48) W 61 63 61
  6. RG R16 Soderling (25) L 26 76(2) 46 67(2)
  7. Davis F Berdych (20) W 75 60 62

2010

  1. RG R128 Mina (655) W 62 62 62
  2. RG R64 Zeballos (44) W 62 62 63
  3. RG R32 Hewitt (33) W 63 64 63
  4. RG R16 Bellucci (29) W 62 75 64
  5. RG QF Almagro (21) W 76(2) 76(3) 64
  6. RG SF Melzer (27) W 62 63 76(6)
  7. RG F Soderling (7) W 64 62 64

2011

  1. RG R128 Isner (39) W 64 67(2) 67(2) 62 64
  2. RG R64 Andujar (48) W 75 63 76(4)
  3. RG R32 Veic (227) W 61 63 60
  4. RG R16 Ljubicic (37) W 75 63 63
  5. RG QF Soderling (5) W 64 61 76(3)
  6. RG SF Murray (4) W 64 75 64
  7. RG F Federer (3) W 75 76(3) 57 61
  8. Davis SF Gasquet (15) W 63 60 61
  9. Davis SF Tsonga (10) W 60 62 64
  10. Davis F Monaco (26) W 61 61 62
  11. Davis F Del Potro (11) W 16 64 61 76(0)

2012

  1. RG R128 Bolelli (111) W 62 62 61
  2. RG R64 Istomin (43) W 62 62 60
  3. RG R32 Schwank (192) W 61 63 64
  4. RG R16 Monaco (15) W 62 60 60
  5. RG QF Almagro (13) W 76(4) 62 63
  6. RG SF Ferrer (6) W 62 62 61
  7. RG F Djokovic (1) W 64 63 26 75

2013 

  1. RG R128 Brands (59) W 46 76(4) 64 63
  2. RG R64 Klizan (35) W 46 63 63 63
  3. RG R32 Fognini (29) W 76(5) 64 64
  4. RG R16 Nishikori (15) W 64 61 63
  5. RG QF Wawrinka (10) W 62 63 61
  6. RG SF Djokovic (1) W 64 36 61 67(3) 97
  7. RG F Ferrer (5) W 63 62 63
  8. Davis P.O. Stakhovsky (92) W 60 64 64

2014 

  1. RG R128 Ginepri (279) W 60 63 60
  2. RG R64 Thiem (57) W 62 62 63
  3. RG R32 L. Mayer (65) W 62 75 62
  4. RG R16 Lajovic (83) W 61 62 61
  5. RG QF Ferrer (5) W 46 64 60 61
  6. RG SF Murray (8) W 63 62 61
  7. RG F Djokovic (2) W 36 75 62 64

2015 

  1. RG R128 Halys (296) W 63 63 64
  2. RG R64 Almagro (154) W 64 63 61
  3. RG R32 Kuznetsov (120) W 61 63 62
  4. RG R16 Sock (37) W 63 61 57 62
  5. RG QF Djokovic (1) L 57 36 16

2016 

  1. RG R128 Groth (100) W 61 61 61
  2. RG R64 Bagnis (99) W 63 60 63

2017

  1. RG R128 Paire (45) W 61 64 61
  2. RG R64 Haase (46) W 61 64 63
  3. RG R32 Basilashvili (63) W 60 61 60
  4. RG R16 Bautista Agut (18) W 61 62 62
  5. RG QF Carreno Busta (21) W 62 20 RET
  6. RG SF Thiem (7) W 63 64 60
  7. RG F Wawrinka (3) W 62 63 61

2018

  1. Davis QF Kohlschreiber (34) W 62 62 63
  2. Davis QF A. Zverev (4) W 61 64 64
  3. RG R128 Bolelli (129) W 64 63 76(9)
  4. RG R64 Pella (78) W 62 61 61
  5. RG R32 Gasquet (32) W 63 62 62
  6. RG R16 Marterer (70) W 63 62 76(4)
  7. RG QF Schwartzman (12) W 46 63 62 62
  8. RG SF Del Potro (6) W 64 61 62
  9. RG F Thiem (8) W 64 63 62

2019 

  1. RG R128 Hanfnann (180) W 62 61 63
  2. RG R64 Maden (114) W 61 62 64
  3. RG R32 Goffin (29) W 61 63 46 63
  4. RG R16 Londero (78) W 62 63 63
  5. RG QF Nishikori (7) W 61 61 63
  6. RG SF Federer (3) W 63 64 62
  7. RG F Thiem (4) W 63 57 61 61

120 matches by the numbers

  • Total sets played: 391
  • Total sets won: 353 (90,28%)
  • Total sets lost: 38 (9,72%)
  • Total five-setters: 4 (3,33%, all wins, among which one went the distance and two to a deciding tie-breaker)
  • Total tie-breaks played: 33 (8,44%, 24 wins and 9 losses)
  • Total 6-0 bagels: 26 (6,65%, 25 for him and 1 against)
  • Matches played at the French Open: 95 (93 wins e 2 losses)
  • Davis Cup ties: 18 (all wins)
  • Total matches against Top 10 competition: 35 (34 wins and 1 loss)
  • Total matches against number 1-ranked opponents: 9 (8 wins and 1 loss)
  • Number of finals played (excluding the Davis Cup): 19 (all wins)
  • Number of finals played at the French Open: 12 (all wins)

The opponents

  • 8 times: Federer (4 RG F, 2 RG SF, 1 Montecarlo F, 1 Roma F, all wins), Djokovic (2 RG F, 3 RG SF, 2 RG QF, 1 Davis, one loss)
  • 4 times: Ferrer, Hewitt, Soderling (1 loss), Thiem, Almagro
  • 3 times: Gasquet, Del Potro
  • 2 times: Coria, Roddick, Wawrinka, Murray, Ljubicic, Seppi, Bolelli, Bellucci, Monaco, Nishikori
  • 1 time: Verdasco, Fognini, Carreno Busta, Robredo, Berdych, Clement, Ferrero, Burgsmuller, Malisse, Grosjean, Puerta, Gaudio, Bracciali, Kim, Mathieu, Volandri, Cipolla, Montanes, Moya, Devilder, Nieminen, Querrey, Tipsarevic, M. Daniel, Gabashvili, Mina, Zeballos, Melzer, Isner, Andujar, Veic, Tsonga, Istomin, Schwank, Brands, Klizan, Stakhovsky, Ginepri, L. Mayer, Lajovic, Halys, Kuznetsov, Sock, Groth, Bagnis, Paire, Haase, Basilashvili, Bautista Agut, Kohlschreiber, A. Zverev, Pella, Marterer, Schwartzman, Hanfmann, Maden, Goffin, Londero.

 Some final considerations

  • Of the 120 considered matches, 95 took place at the French Open, 18 in the Davis Cup (all wins), and seven were ATP finals (all wins);
  • Of the 95 matches played at the French Open, 91 were wins in three or four sets. The others are his only two losses, one against Soderling in 2009 and one against Djokovic in 2015, and two five-set wins, one against Djokovic in 2013 and one against Isner in 2011;
  • On his way to 12 French Open title, Rafa beat Roger and Nole six times each;
  • Rafa is 12-0 in French Open semifinals (three against Nole, two against Roger) and finals (four against Roger and two against Nole). Therefore, the 12 times he’s reached the semis he’s always won the tournament.

 

FELIZ CUMPLEAÑOS CAMPEÓN!

Article translated  by Tommaso Villa

ATP

Updated Entry Lists For Eastbourne, Mallorca

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Photo by mallorca-championships.com

Two ATP 250 events will be played on grass before Wimbledon, with a new tournament taking place in Mallorca (Spain).

 

The third week of the shortened grass-court season will see two ATP 250 events being played in Eastbourne (Great Britain) and Mallorca (Spain) from the 20th to the 26th of June. Eastbourne has been hosting a grass-court tournament since 2009, when it took the place of Nottingham in the ATP Tour’s calendar, while the Mallorca Championships is a new event.

World’s number one Novak Djokovic plans to play doubles in Mallorca, while Dominic Thiem and Daniil Medvedev have received a Wild-Card in the singles draw. The defending champion Taylor Fritz has withdrawn from Eastbourne due to injury.


ATP 250 Eastbourne (GBR, Grass), entry list:
Monfils, Gael (FRA)
De Minaur, Alex (AUS)
OUT Wawrinka, Stan (SUI)
Karatsev, Aslan (RUS)
Sonego, Lorenzo (ITA)
Basilashvili, Nikoloz (GEO)
OUT Fritz, Taylor (USA)
Opelka, Reilly (USA)
Davidovich Fokina, Alejandro (ESP)
Ramos-Vinolas, Albert (ESP)
Bublik, Alexander (KAZ)
OUT Paire, Benoit (FRA)
OUT Krajinovic, Filip (SRB)

Norrie, Cameron (GBR)
Millman, John (AUS)
Fucsovics, Marton (HUN)
OUT Cilic, Marin (CRO)
Djere, Laslo (SRB)
(SE)
(SE)
(WC)
(WC)
(WC)
Alternates:
IN Bedene, Aljaz (SLO)
IN Koepfer, Dominik (GER)
IN Nishioka, Yoshihito (JPN)
IN Popyrin, Alexei (AUS)
IN Pospisil, Vasek (CAN)

Alt.1 Tsonga, Jo-Wilfried (FRA)
Alt.2 Tiafoe, Frances (USA)
Alt.3 Ruusuvuori, Emil (FIN)


ATP 250 Eastbourne (GBR, Grass), qualifying:
Tiafoe, Frances (USA)
Ruusuvuori, Emil (FIN)
Gerasimov, Egor (BLR)
Kwon, Soonwoo (KOR)
Herbert, Pierre-Hugues (FRA)
Gombos, Norbert (SVK)
Ivashka, Ilya (BLR)
Seppi, Andreas (ITA)
Duckworth, James (AUS)
Bagnis, Facundo (ARG)
Ymer, Mikael (SWE)
Anderson, Kevin (RSA)
Kukushkin, Mikhail (KAZ)
Kuzmanov, Dimitar (BUL)
(WC)
(WC)
Alternates:
Alt.1 Mahut, Nicolas (FRA)
Alt.2 Viola, Matteo (ITA)
Alt.3 Klein, Lukas (SVK)



ATP 250 Mallorca (ESP, Grass):
Carreno Busta, Pablo (ESP)
Ruud, Casper (NOR)
Khachanov, Karen (RUS)
Humbert, Ugo (FRA)
Lajovic, Dusan (SRB)
Mannarino, Adrian (FRA)
Struff, Jan-Lennard (GER)
Kecmanovic, Miomir (SRB)
Harris, Lloyd (RSA)
OUT Delbonis, Federico (ARG)
OUT Kyrgios, Nick (AUS)
OUT Chardy, Jeremy (FRA)

Pella, Guido (ARG)
Querrey, Sam (USA)
Lopez, Feliciano (ESP)
Sandgren, Tennys (USA)
Andujar, Pablo (ESP)
Simon, Gilles (FRA)
Thompson, Jordan (AUS)
(SE)
(SE)
WC Medvedev, Daniil (RUS)
WC Thiem, Dominic (AUT)
(WC)
Alternates:
IN Vesely, Jiri (CZE)
IN Moutet, Corentin (FRA)
IN Travaglia, Stefano (ITA)

Alt.1 Munar, Jaume (ESP)
Alt.2 Caruso, Salvatore (ITA)
Alt.3 Giron, Marcos (USA)


ATP 250 Mallorca (ESP, Grass), qualifying:
Munar, Jaume (ESP)
Mager, Gianluca (ITA)
Cuevas, Pablo (URU)
Albot, Radu (MDA)
Pouille, Lucas (FRA)
Caruso, Salvatore (ITA)
Hanfmann, Yannick (GER)
Carballes Baena, Roberto (ESP)
Martinez, Pedro (ESP)
Sousa, Joao (POR)
Galan, Daniel Elahi (COL)
Istomin, Denis (UZB)
Bachinger, Matthias (GER)
Kuhn, Nicola (ESP)
(WC)
(WC)
Alternates:
Alt.1 Viola, Matteo (ITA)
Alt.2 Watanuki, Yosuke (JPN)
Alt.3 Klein, Lukas (SVK)

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Dominic Thiem Signs Up To New Athlete Management Agency Launched By Kosmos

The world No.5 has become the first athlete to ever be represented by Kosmos.

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Dominic Thiem says he is ‘proud’ to be joining a new agency that has been launched by Kosmos which specialises in athlete management.

 

Kosmos, which was founded by Barcelona F.C star Gerard Pique, says their venture is aimed at supporting those in the world of sport. In a statement issued on Thursday, their objective is to provide ‘comprehensive service to athletes where, in addition to representation, commercial and public relations, it will also provide sports, legal and financial advice.’ The new division will be headed by Galo Blanco who is a former player and coach. Blanco previously served as the Competition Director of Kosmos.

“We are very excited about this project. Many people who have been linked to sport for many years and specialise in different key areas in the development of an athlete’s career work at Kosmos. We know what is important for the active player and for their future, because many of us are or have been professional players,” says Gerard Piqué, President of Kosmos.

27-year-old Thiem is the first athlete to have signed up to the agency. Coincidentally the Austrian was co-coached by Blanco on the Tour between 2017-2018. Blanco ended their collaboration in order to focus on the redevelopment of the Davis Cup. Thiem is now coached on the Tour by Nicolas Massu, as well as his father Wolfgang.

“I am very happy that Galo is part of the team again. He has been very close to me and my family, even when he stopped being my coach,” said Thiem.
“The season has not started as I would have liked, I am working very hard to get back to the level of the end of 2020, and adding Galo and the rest of the Kosmos team can bring a lot of positive things.”

Kosmos has become a growingly influential business in tennis since its launch. The company are the financial masterminds behind transforming the Davis Cup and have pledged to invest $3bn into the competition over a 25-year period.

This year’s Davis Cup finals have been spread across three cities in Madrid, Innsbruck and Turin over 11 days. Pique said the decision to use multiple cities is to prevent late-night finishes in the competition which was a problem back in 2019. Two year’s ago, Italy’s clash with the USA concluded at 4am.

“Some of the matches ended very late, so we made the decision to go to other cities and to play in 11 days instead of seven,” he said at the event’s official launch earlier this year. “The event has been evolving, maturing.”

Albert Costa, who is currently the Davis Cup Finals Director, will also take on the role of Competition Director for Kosmos.

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Uncle Toni Backs Rafael Nadal To Win 21st Grand Slam Title Before Season Ends

Nadal’s former mentor also explains why he was hoping Novak Djokovic would lose in the French Open final.

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The former coach of Rafael Nadal says he remains confident that he will win another major title in 2021 despite losing in the semifinals of the French Open.

 

Toni Nadal, who is Nadal’s uncle that introduced him to the sport at a young age, says he is ‘maintaining confidence’ that the Spaniard can achieve more major glory. The king of clay is currently tied with Roger Federer for the most Grand Slam titles won by a male singles player, which is 20. Although Novak Djokovic is now on 19 and could possibly overtake his two rivals this year should he achieve a calendar Grand Slam.

It was Djokovic who knocked Nadal out of the French Open after prevailling in four sets during their semi-final encounter. The Serbian has become the first player in history to have beaten him at the tournament on multiple occasions.

“We saw a good game and a denouement that brings Novak dangerously close to Federer and Rafael, in their struggle to close their respective careers as the greatest conqueror of Grand Slam titles,” Toni wrote for El Pais. “The next two tournaments, Wimbledon and the US Open, will probably be decisive in unveiling it. I would not dare to venture conclusions, but I do dare to maintain the confidence that it is my nephew who raises one of the two.”

Nadal is a two-time Wimbledon champion but he hasn’t lifted the trophy since 2010 and it has been a decade since he reached the final. At the US Open he has enjoyed more success by winning four titles, including two out of the past four times. He missed the US Open last year due to concerns related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In his column the 60-year-old admitted that he was hoping Djokovic would lose the French Open final to Stefanos Tsitsipas because it ‘would help alleviate’ his nephew’s disappointment. In the title match the world No.1 battled back from two sets down to clinch the title. Becoming the first man in the Open Era to have won every major tournament at least twice.

“The only thing that could have somewhat alleviated the disappointment over Rafael’s defeat in his Roland Garros semi-final match against Novak Djokovic would have been that he was defeated in the final by Stefanos Tsitsipas,” he wrote.
“Throughout these last two weeks of competition I was telling my children. The player that I saw as most capable of beating the Serbian on clay if the opportunity arose, apart from my nephew, of course, was precisely the Greek. And for much of the meeting I held out hope that it would happen.”

Nadal is currently back home in Manacor where he attended the graduation ceremony of his academy on Wednesday. He is not expected to play in any tournament leading up to Wimbledon which will begin a week Monday.

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