Shanghai Tournament official admits that they have fastened up the courts of this year edition of Masters 1000:
At least two top-tier tournaments have taken corrective action. The first to speed up conditions significantly in an attempt to encourage the attack was the 2010 indoor Masters 1000 in Paris, although it later retrenched in the face of player criticism. The most recent move came at this year’s Masters 1000 in Shanghai in which Djokovic beat Juan Martín del Potro in last month’s final. Shanghai, like Paris, is played on hard courts, and this time there was no backlash, at least not yet.
“We set it up faster than we’ve ever done before,” said Charles Smith, an American who is part of the tournament’s leadership group and is also on the ATP board of directors. “We were medium fast last year and fast this year, and I think it was a negative historically for people if you had a fast court. And this is part of the narrative people are coming to grips with. Even with fast courts, you still get 20-shot rallies and beautiful points. These guys are just such good defenders. Novak is as fast as any guy I’ve seen, side to side, so part of this is trying to keep up with the players and their evolution.”
Smith said the decision to speed up the court was made after consulting with players, fans and reporters, and it was done by play testing and then lowering the silicone, or grit, content in the cushioned acrylic surface.
“It’s amazing to see these guys get back into points the way players didn’t in the past,” Smith said. “So the rallies are getting longer and longer, and so part of the thing in speeding up the court was to reward a player for taking risks.”
Smith said he was surprised to see rallies still extending past 15 strokes on a “very quick court.”
So ok, people were saying Nadal would not have prayer in theses conditions if they did..It took a DelGoatro circa 2009 to beat him there, and even then, he had his chances to possibly take to a deciding third set..