‘I saw Rafael Nadal vs Novak Djokovic before I fell asleep’

Roger Federer, winner of Roland Garros in 2009, had to skip this year’s edition as he is still recovering from a knee injury. Roger watched some action from Paris, including the quarter-final clash between two of his biggest rivals, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic.

Novak and Rafa faced each other for four hours and 12 minutes until 1:15 am. Roger didn’t watch the entire encounter, but he watched them until he fell asleep.

It was their 59th meeting and Rafa claimed a 6-2, 4-6, 6-2, 7-6 triumph to dethrone Novak and fight for the title. Unlike last year’s semifinals, Nadal had an advantage over Djokovic, playing well in the crucial moments and delivering the right shots when it came down to getting ahead.

Rafa had to dig deep to beat Novak on clay for the 20th time, mastering his second serve and producing 57 winners and 43 unforced errors.
Nadal was often the first to strike in the rally, sweeping Djokovic off the baseline and throwing everything he had in his arsenal at him.

The Spaniard saved eight of his 12 break chances, converting 43% of return points into seven breaks from 17 chances to win. Novak had the opportunity to force a decider, playing well early in the fourth set to take a 5-2 lead.

He wasted two set points on serve in game nine and lost ground in the tie-break to end his campaign in the quarters and lose the ATP throne. Nadal got a better start in three sets out of four, quickly gaining the upper hand and doing everything on the court to topple his main rival.

The Spaniard managed two breaks in the first set to win 6-2 in 50 minutes.

Rafael Nadal defeated Novak Djokovic in four sets at Roland Garros.

The second set lasted nearly an hour and a half and featured a massive comeback.

Djokovic trailed 3-0 before winning six of the next seven games 6-4 on a huge boost. Nadal restarted in the decider and won it 6-2 to keep his energy going into the fourth set.

Novak landed an impressive four holds and earned a break to open a 5-2 gap, giving him a chance to set a deciding set. The Serb lost two set balls on his serve when the score was 5: 3 and then lost momentum.

Rafa broke with a forehand cross and both players served well in the remaining three games to set up a tie break. Nadal took a 6-1 lead and got the fourth match point with a backhand winner at 6: 4.

“I didn’t see the final, I saw Nadal’s quarterfinals against Djokovic a bit before going to sleep,” said Roger Federer.

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