Safin vs. Nalbandian in Madrid final

10-23-2004, 04:30 PM
Who do you think will win?

IMO, it all depends on Marat Safin really. If he can maintain his focus and channel his energy positively as he has been doing all week (and of course score big with that serve!) I see him the winner very comfortably.

On the other hand, Nalbandian is the type of player that will keep coming back at him with his exquisite counter-punching skills. If he can get into Marat's head like he did at RG it might go the other way. However this being indoor-hard it might not be so easy.

Here is what I think are the important factors for both players coming into the match:

Marat Safin
* Will need to get in a high percentage of first serves. On a quick indoor court that is one of his main assets. Even the great Andre had problems returning some of those howitzers

* Has to stay focused and not let things such as bad line calls get in the way. Early in the 1st set today v Agassi he thought he had served an ace at 40-0 but it was called a let and he didnt hear it. He lost his focus being dragged back to duece but eventually closed the game out. He cannot afford to have those lapses against David!

* Has to be patient and choose the right moment to attack. Against Nalbandian its a whole new ball-game. Against Agassi he was quite content in soaking up the power that Andre gave him to hit back with even more power. Against David he won't have that luxury- he will have to generate the power and he must choose his moments wisely. This is IMO one of his main weaknesses, going for too much at the wrong time in a rally.

* Mix it up with net play. David is a rythm player, if he gets into a groove trading groundies with his opponents, more often than not he comes out on top. Safin has to keep him guessing, not to let him slip into his comfort zone.

David Nalbandian

* Keep returning as well as he has been against both Dent and Ljubicic and work his way into the rally. His counterpunching skills will enable him to soak up a lot of what Marat might throw at him. So if he can get back a lot of returns and make Marat work hard in the baseline rallies, he just might be able to wear him down.

* Mix his pace- hit hard when he needs to, but make good use of the court. Throw in angled shots with high amounts of topspin, or low slice to keep the ball low. This is what Agassi failed to do and it cost him the match. While Agassi hit it hard and deep, he was hitting it into Marat's comfort zone more often than not. Marat eats those hard deep groundies for breakfast. This is why David will need to vary the spins and angles. That is the play that frustrates Marat the most, as players like Santoro and Federer will attest to. When being forced to move bi-laterally (i.e., forwards/backwards and sideways in one motion) Marat is not as good as when he moves uni-laterally and sometimes can be made to look quite clumsy.

* Go into the net- if as an extra to the above mentioned he can also throw in some volleys, it will be a big plus. He has been doing it relatively consistently all week and it has paid him good dividents.

Summary: If both players do the above mentioned it will be a thrilling contest, but because of the surface I would have to give Marat the edge. If he can consistently do the above-mentioned things, I can definitely see him overpowering Nalbandian bearing in mind the speed of the court.

10-23-2004, 04:32 PM
Well I'm kinda hoping for Nalbandian to turn up in one of these finals, he seems to have a mental problem with big matches at present.

Safin is looking mature right now, he seems to me to be in the right place mentally, so i think he'll win, but hope for an entertaining match :)

10-23-2004, 04:55 PM
Safin should win, but we all know Safin (:retard: ).

10-23-2004, 04:57 PM
It's difficult to say as I haven't seen Nalbandian this week...but I agree with your points..And I will add...He has to be more agressive when returning Nalby serve

Allez hippo !!!! :banana: :banana:

10-23-2004, 04:58 PM
I really hope Marat wins:D!!!!! GOOOOOOO Marat:woohoo:!!!!!!!!

10-23-2004, 05:08 PM
come on marat!! :bounce: and please dont be a :retard:

10-23-2004, 05:13 PM
I saw both matches and I think Marat will win, he played unbelievable good today

10-23-2004, 05:17 PM
I tend to go with Safin, but only just.

It's a luxury to have both these guys in the final.

10-23-2004, 05:21 PM
David :yeah:

10-23-2004, 05:23 PM
I think marat will win.

10-23-2004, 05:26 PM
I like both guys, so I don't mind who wins. It would be nice for David though, since he has already lost three huge title finals in his career, and is a high-caliber player who needs such a title.

Black Adam
10-23-2004, 05:36 PM
is it a best of five final? if it is i might give a slight advntage to safin but i think that in a best of three setter safin has to win. ;) :)

10-23-2004, 05:37 PM
It's best of 5 :)

User ID 4783
10-23-2004, 05:41 PM
I haven't seen Nalbandian this week yet, but I really hope Marat stays focused, he has to play as well as he did today to beat him I suppose

10-23-2004, 05:42 PM
Mewants David, methinks Marat.

10-23-2004, 05:51 PM
safin will win unless he is :retard: tomorrow. well, i want safin to win ...

10-23-2004, 05:52 PM
Great pre-match analysis, RonE. I don't think this tournament has been shown in the U.S. So, I don't know what form the players are in. I'm thrilled that David is winning again. But, Marat's the man! He's going to win in three. Good luck to both! :)

10-23-2004, 05:53 PM
I'd love to see.... wait :o:o I'd love to hear about :rolleyes: :rolleyes: thanks TTC... a 5-set thriller :bounce:

10-23-2004, 05:57 PM
I want David to win so much, but Safin is playing so well, it can be pretty much impossible to break him at times on a surface like this so David will need to serve extremely well to keep up. Safin is the favourite, but I will be cheering for David all the way! :worship:

10-23-2004, 06:03 PM
Safin will win in 4 sets IMO

David has never really turned up in finals like these and I think Marat's playing to well for David to threaten him :)

10-23-2004, 06:23 PM
great analysis on both guys, RonE! :yeah:
I saw both matches. both have a great form. IMO, David is more approach to his best tennis than Marat is. Marat has many thing to improve. his stability of 1st serve, his FH shot and his aggression, all could be better. as for his patience, it is well enough now. finally, I cannot agree more with below:
won't have that luxury- he will have to generate the power and he must choose his moments wisely. This is IMO one of his main weaknesses, going for too much at the wrong time in a rally.

10-23-2004, 06:27 PM
I hope Marat, but I haven't seen any matches cos Eurosport isn't showing it!!!

I hope for everyone who can watch that it will be an exciting match, with both players playing their best! :hug:

10-23-2004, 06:27 PM
I'd love to see.... wait :o:o I'd love to hear about :rolleyes: :rolleyes: thanks TTC... a 5-set thriller :bounce:

Well all non-TTC viewers always have those magnificent one-hour highlight shows on ESPN to enjoy! :D

:rolleyes: :mad:

10-23-2004, 06:45 PM
Well all non-TTC viewers always have those magnificent one-hour highlight shows on ESPN to enjoy! :D

:rolleyes: :mad:

OMG How could I forget :o:o:rolleyes::rolleyes:

Well at least I'm on the West Coast now so I don't have to see it at an ungodly hour;)

10-23-2004, 06:49 PM
Vamos David :banana:

10-23-2004, 06:59 PM
Unfortunately I haven't seen any tennis from Madrid and have to rely on what I read on the internet. I get the impression Madrid 2004 is kind of like Bercy 2002. Marat was on a mission there and unstoppable. He seems to be as focused as he was then and his game is there. I think he's going to have the edge tomorrow and nowadays Peter can give pointers on how to beat Dave, which will help Marat. ;)

10-23-2004, 07:04 PM
Nably deserves to win first AMS,COME ON,beat Safin!!! :rocker2:

Chloe le Bopper
10-23-2004, 07:06 PM
I think that Marat will win, simply because he matches up very well against David... but I don't agree with the suggestions that Marat has to be absolute crap on a stick for David to have a chance tomorrow. :rolleyes:

I'm debating if I want to wake up and watch David lose his 13432343 big final in spectacular fashion or not... since that's sort of what I'm expecting.

10-23-2004, 07:07 PM
Lets Go Marat!

10-23-2004, 07:13 PM
Vamos David!!! I know you can do it!!! :)

10-23-2004, 07:24 PM
Vamos Marat :bigclap:

10-23-2004, 07:40 PM
Go marat! Win your 13th title!

10-23-2004, 07:56 PM
I sooooooooooo hope Marat can take it in 3!!!!!!!! Or at least 4! :bigclap: :bounce: :banana: :dance: :yippee: :bounce:
DAVAI MARAT!!!!!!! :bigclap: :yippee:

10-23-2004, 10:04 PM
i think marat will win :bigclap:
hopefully it will be a good match

10-23-2004, 10:58 PM
Nalbandian was struggling with the Ljubicic serve quite a bit yesterday and needed Ljubicic to miss every groundstroke to break serve in the second set.

Safin was brilliant against Andre on the other hand so hard to see Nalbandian winning this one.

10-23-2004, 11:00 PM
Marat!! :)

10-23-2004, 11:25 PM
I will say Safin, so then I'll jinx it, and Nalbandian will win. ;) Nalbandian has looked very good all week, and he looks the more likely of the two, to win tomorrow.

10-23-2004, 11:38 PM
I can't say that I'm sure David will win tomorrow, cause I'd be lying, but I'm sure he has chances and if he's focused he can make it.
Vamos David!!!! :bounce:

10-23-2004, 11:47 PM
I think Safin has good chances to win:)! If he serves and returns well of course;)!

Vladimir Poutine
10-24-2004, 04:02 AM
I don't care either way as I like them both and would love a close final, that being said it's about time for Nalbandian to step up and not be so nervous in one of these finals and I would prefer him to win mainly because he hasn't won a title in a very long time. Either way I am happy with the result.

10-24-2004, 04:44 AM
I think that Safin is gonna win this one, as long as he is focused as he was against Agassi. It is really a match for him to either win or lose.

10-24-2004, 04:50 AM

and once again... bloody star sports.

10-24-2004, 06:09 AM
Go Marat !!!!! :banana: :yeah:
I believe you can take this title!!! :bounce:

10-24-2004, 06:10 AM

10-24-2004, 07:08 AM
I would love this to go 5 sets, but for me David needs to be really ready to go and win the 1st set, if he does that then it will be a contest for sure and he can win, but how he handles the nerves is the key.

Safin will be the favourite on his form and the fact that the times they have played indoors, he has won those matches. David really needs to return well and get a higher percentage of 1st serves in that he did in the Ljubicic match.

I can't lose really as I will be satisfied who wins.

10-24-2004, 07:27 AM
Go Marat!! :bounce:

10-24-2004, 10:15 AM
Vamos Safin!!!! :yeah:

10-24-2004, 10:37 AM

10-24-2004, 10:37 AM
hopefully safin

Sakura 0101
10-24-2004, 10:50 AM
DAVID !!!!
You are the BEST :kiss: