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Federer Beats Nadal On Clay


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  • 2 weeks later...

Looks like you guys were correct, Federer won't be beating Nadal in Paris this year.

http://sports.espn.go.com/sports/tennis/fr...tory?id=4218973

Nadal ousted with first French defeat

PARIS -- Rafael Nadal's unbeaten run at the French Open is over.

The four-time defending champion lost to Robin Soderling of Sweden 6-2, 6-7 (2), 6-4, 7-6 (2) in the fourth round Sunday, ending his record 31-match winning streak at Roland Garros.

"When one player plays bad, [he] must lose," Nadal said. "[it] was my fault. ... I didn't play my best tennis and for that reason I lose."

Soderling, seeded 23rd at this year's tournament, ran Nadal ragged on center court with his hard serve and booming forehand.

"I played well today, but I think I played some even better matches in my career," said the 24-year-old Soderling, who called Nadal "the greatest clay-court player of all time."

"I worked good with my forehand, and my backhand worked well, as well. I worked my backhand flat and tried to go around and hit my forehand. I think I played exactly the way I wanted to play before the match. I served well, extremely well, and that really, really helped me today."

Nadal has dominated the French Open since his first match on the red clay at Roland Garros.

"He didn't surprise me because I know how he plays and how dangerous he can be," said Nadal, who said he failed to attack Soderling. "I didn't play aggressive."

In his 31 previous matches, he had lost only seven sets -- the last one coming against Roger Federer in the 2007 final.

"He can't feel good right now," Soderling said.

Nadal had won three of the last four major titles, missing out only on the U.S. Open. Because he won the Australian Open, he had been the only man with a chance to complete a Grand Slam.

He had also been trying to become the first man to win five straight French Open titles.

On Sunday, Soderling wouldn't be goaded into saying anything bad about Nadal.

"I've been answering these questions now for two years. I mean, I'm feeling pretty tired of this," Soderling said. "He's just another player on the tour."

Defending his Wimbledon title will be Nadal's next major goal, but that will come after a little rest and relaxation.

"Right now, my preparation is for the swimming pool at my house," joked Nadal, who was also trying to become the first man to win five straight French Open titles. "Give me three more days."

Andy Murray advanced to the quarterfinals with relative ease.

The third-seeded Murray beat No. 13 Marin Cilic of Croatia 7-5, 7-6 (4), 6-1 on Sunday, giving the Briton the first four-match winning streak on clay in his career.

Cilic was treated by a trainer for right leg problems in the third set after taking a tumble while chasing a lob.

But Murray was better throughout the match.

He will play No. 12 Fernando Gonzalez of Chile for a semifinal berth.

Gonzalez became the first player to reach the quarterfinals, beating Victor Hanescu of Romania 6-2, 6-4, 6-2.

Gonzalez, who reached the 2007 Australian Open final, ended the match with his 21st forehand winner. He finished with 50 winners and only 16 unforced errors.

"I tried to win every point," Gonzalez said. "And then I'm trying to not be risky if I don't need it. Maybe I got a break, and then I can start to hit my huge shots. ... When I have to use my shot, I use it, because I know I'm going to win the match with my forehand and my serve."

The 12th-seeded Chilean also reached the quarterfinals at Roland Garros last year, but lost to eventual finalist Federer.

Hanescu reached the French Open quarterfinals in 2005 but also lost to Federer.

Gonzalez reached the semifinals at the two other clay-court tournaments he entered this year, but missed a pair of others with an ankle injury.

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Hard to see Roger win in France, I just don't see Nadal losing twice especially in the Open on his bread and butter turf.

If Roger is going to tie the record, its going to be in a few weeks in England.

Not this.

:)

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Federer is truly one of the greats, i love his attitute more than Nadal's that's for sure, maybe Nadal is gonna be less cocky and everything in a few years, will see.

I'm glad to be in my late 20's and being a Tennis fan though, i got to see Sampras, Agassi and now Federer and Nadal in the past 20 years.

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I'll eat my words and I enjoyed the match as much as anyone, but lets not kids ourselves, if Rafa is there and healthy (the commentators said hes having knee problems, that doesn't sounds good....) theres a very good chance we're discussing whether or not Roger is ever going to get to 14 or not.

but that doesn't take anything away from what federer accomplished yesterday or in his career (20 consecutive semi finals is ridiculous!). look at how roger handled soderling vs. nadal. not even close. federer was the better player in this tournament.

i'm not sure when nadal's knee started bothering him. he didn't use it as an excuse for losing. he simply said he didn't play very well (evidently). i think the pain only started once he got home. he's already pulled out of the queen's. hopefully, he'll be in shape for wimbledon.

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but that doesn't take anything away from what federer accomplished yesterday or in his career (20 consecutive semi finals is ridiculous!). look at how roger handled soderling vs. nadal. not even close. federer was the better player in this tournament.

i'm not sure when nadal's knee started bothering him. he didn't use it as an excuse for losing. he simply said he didn't play very well (evidently). i think the pain only started once he got home. he's already pulled out of the queen's. hopefully, he'll be in shape for wimbledon.

Can't use it as an excuse, makes him sound like a whiner.

Knee problems take a while to heal, Federer might have a clear road to 16 majors with Wimbledon and US Open coming up.

The commentators said Fed's drop shot was a big change in his game. I wonder if that could have been enough to take Nadal. Maybe we'll see in 2010.

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Can't use it as an excuse, makes him sound like a whiner.

fair enough. the commentators implied that he only starting feeling pain once he was back in spain but the soderling match was uncharacteristic for him so it's possible it started then.

The commentators said Fed's drop shot was a big change in his game. I wonder if that could have been enough to take Nadal. Maybe we'll see in 2010.

federer was in the zone and was serving amazing but the drop shot helped him a lot throughout the tournament. i'd be curious to see what would've happened against nadal had he been feeling pain. chances are, he wouldn't have been able to get to the ball. i guess we can wait and see what happens at wimbledon. (i'd be surprised if nadal didn't play but no one knows how serious the knee trouble is yet).

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  • 2 weeks later...

any wimbledon watchers?

i'm pretty disappointed that nadal isn't there to defend his title but there's something to be said about federer and how he's managed to stay relatively healthy through a stellar career.

he suffered from mono last year and everyone thought his career was over because he played through it. nadal didn't even make the tournament and no one's questioning his ability...

hopefully i won't be talking to myself for the next couple of weeks...

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