An observation: Slow hardcourts hurt Nadal more than Fast hardcourts [Archive] - MensTennisForums.com

An observation: Slow hardcourts hurt Nadal more than Fast hardcourts

Start da Game
01-22-2011, 01:57 PM
you heard it right........contrary to the common belief, that is the case with this newly improved version of the world no.1........slow courts are posing more challenges to him than fast courts.......

explanation: he improved his serve over the last one year and it is clearly showing in his first serve stats........serve was one of the main reasons why he won the us open last year........

even his return of serve is better on fast courts, he gets into a rhythm with it at one point or another in the tournament on fast courts.......on slow hardcourts, players are able to throw him off rhythm with spin serves and fast serves.......on fast courts, they are going for more pace against nadal and nadal is finding his range on the return after two or three rounds.......us open 2010 is the biggest example.......

coming to his groundstrokes, his forehands are taking off better on fast courts, the zip he gets off the surface on fast courts adds tremendous value to his groundies and robbing opponents of time, something which people think will happen to nadal on fast courts........

what's happening on slow courts is, his brutal topspin forehands are not taking off as viciously as on fast courts........you can just watch the ongoing australian open........they are sitting up and presenting opportunities to players........

these slow hardcourts are giving players time to set up and tackle those vicious topspin tsunamies........

what adds more to this theory is, that he won the medium slow hardcourt slam AO after two marathon matches where his opponents really challeged him, while he won the fast court slam USO losing just a set or two.......

on slow hardcourts, even his spin second serve is sitting up where as on fast courts they are sliding off smoothly taking the opponents out of the court........he initially struggles with ROS on fastcourts but he gets into the groove after a couple of matches in the tournament.......once he finds his range on ROS, he is tough to stop on fast hardcourts as proved by the us open........

i am still very confident that nadal can win this thing but i am not sure how he fares if he faces djokovic in the final.......if it's murray, he will target his forehand and if it's fed he will target his backhand but i am really not sure how he robs time off djokovic on this slow surface where there is not much assistance for his newly improved serve and with a nonrhythmic return.......djokovic is solid off both wings and can rob time of nadal on this slow surface........

people thought djokovic would be a threat at us open on that fast surface but this is where djokovic is a threat to nadal, on this slow hardcourt of oz........

so the trend has changed.......gone are the days where nadal used to struggle on fast courts........it's the slow courts now which are his most unfriendly surfaces........

Topspindoctor
01-22-2011, 02:09 PM
I disagree. AO surface gives his topspin more bite and makes it harder for big hitters to hit through him.

Start da Game
01-22-2011, 02:17 PM
I disagree. AO surface gives his topspin more bite and makes it harder for big hitters to hit through him.

that's true but what you have to notice here is, the decrease in impact of his topspin zip off the ground is outweighing the increase in impact of the bite off the ground........

in other words, the lack of zip off his groundies on this surface are affecting him more than what he is actually getting on this surface which is the bite.......he is getting the bite off the surface but it's sitting up and presenting itself for players who can blast off both wings.......

on fast hardcourts, he is doing to opponents what people thought would actually happen to him: robbing time.......

GSMnadal
01-22-2011, 02:25 PM
The big difference is that Nadal was in top form during the US Open and now he is far from it. This doesn't mean that all of a sudden he's better on faster hardcourts.

Chartreuse
01-22-2011, 02:26 PM
The big difference is that Nadal was in top form during the US Open and now he is far from it. This doesn't mean that all of a sudden he's better on faster hardcourts.

Exactly.

Johnny Groove
01-22-2011, 02:27 PM
He'll be fine.

Singularity
01-22-2011, 02:31 PM
that's true but what you have to notice here is, the decrease in impact of his topspin zip off the ground is outweighing the increase in impact of the bite off the ground........
By the same token, though, others will find it harder to hit through him, so his defence becomes more of a strength - and how many players defend as well as he does?

rafaholic
01-22-2011, 02:37 PM
nice observation...i also started to think about this since WTF, my opinion is that rafa would be closer to the WTF title if court is faster then that. Because for example, London indoor court is pretty slow without high bounce which is worst posibble comb out there...here in OZ court is slow with high bounce...we want some GS like IW...high bounce and lil bit faster court :))

Start da Game
01-22-2011, 02:44 PM
By the same token, though, others will find it harder to hit through him, so his defence becomes more of a strength - and how many players defend as well as he does?

yes they won't be able to blast through him but the extra time on these slow courts is presenting players time to handle his groundies........to pick sides, pin him to the corners and ultimately force an error from him.......

on fast courts, they are finding it tough to control his topspin tsunamies which are blazing past them at speed........slow courts are offering them time to do something.......i am not surprised that his second serve has been ineffective in this tournament.......

Start da Game
01-22-2011, 02:49 PM
nice observation...i also started to think about this since WTF, my opinion is that rafa would be closer to the WTF title if court is faster then that. Because for example, London indoor court is pretty slow without high bounce which is worst posibble comb out there...here in OZ court is slow with high bounce...we want some GS like IW...high bounce and lil bit faster court :))

yeah, slow hardcourts are the most unfriendly surfaces for the nadal of 2011.......he is still damn quick across the court but not as quick as some 3 or 5 years ago.......that takes away some of his defensive capabilities and he did compensate it with his improved serve.......

these slow courts are negating his improved serve, slowing down viciously spinning balls and providing opponents more time to handle his groundies.......

wait and watch, djokovic is going to be his toughest opponent even though he is mentally too tough for djokovic........

fsoica
01-22-2011, 02:53 PM
cilic will hurt him, ferrer will tire him and muzza will put him out of his confort zone big time, putting him out of his misery in the end.

first time in my life i find myself agreeing with Tardy, but only for the fun of it :)

djokovic, toughest opponent, i got the idea, u silly troll ...

Arkulari
01-22-2011, 03:03 PM
I disagree. AO surface gives his topspin more bite and makes it harder for big hitters to hit through him.

The big difference is that Nadal was in top form during the US Open and now he is far from it. This doesn't mean that all of a sudden he's better on faster hardcourts.

This and this.

What impacts more in Rafa's game is the bounce, more than the actual speed of the court

GlennMirnyi
01-22-2011, 03:14 PM
For goodness' sake, someone stop this guy from making threads. Just pitiful.

Start da Game
01-22-2011, 03:16 PM
This and this.

What impacts more in Rafa's game is the bounce, more than the actual speed of the court

that was 3-5 years ago.......since then he gradually learned how to play on fast courts........the slowness of slow courts is actually negating his improvements which he made to compensate his slight dip in speed.......

SetSampras
01-22-2011, 05:26 PM
I dont think much hurts Nadal unless hes either:
A: Fatigued/burned out
B: Injured
C: Sick

There isn't a player who can beat Nadal anywhere if hes not one of these three things. If you look back at Nadal's recent losses these past 1-2 season you see his losses usually coming as the direct result of one of the top 3 things happen

AO 2010- Still recovering from knee issues, then gets healthy and dominates
YEC 2010- Burned out due to the season
Doha 10- Flu
USO 09- Stomach muscle or whatever it was against Delpo
Madrid 09- Burned out

When Nadal's healthy he finds ways to win. When hes not 100 percent then theres problems. Yes people will argue that Nadal is playing he must be alright. But the guy doesn't know any better sometimes either obviously as he has shown over the years with his ridiculous scheduling.. Hes a competitor, he plays regardless what percentage of tennis hes at. But when hes healthy hes by far the best player in the world at this point. Bottom line regardless of the surface

DrJules
01-22-2011, 05:39 PM
I dont think much hurts Nadal unless hes either:
A: Fatigued/burned out
B: Injured
C: Sick

There isn't a player who can beat Nadal anywhere if hes not one of these three things. If you look back at Nadal's recent losses these past 1-2 season you see his losses usually coming as the direct result of one of the top 3 things happen

AO 2010- Still recovering from knee issues, then gets healthy and dominates
YEC 2010- Burned out due to the season
Doha 10- Flu
USO 09- Stomach muscle or whatever it was against Delpo
Madrid 09- Burned out

When Nadal's healthy he finds ways to win. When hes not 100 percent then theres problems. Yes people will argue that Nadal is playing he must be alright. But the guy doesn't know any better sometimes either obviously as he has shown over the years with his ridiculous scheduling.. Hes a competitor, he plays regardless what percentage of tennis hes at. But when hes healthy hes by far the best player in the world at this point. Bottom line regardless of the surface

That may be true, but if he fails to win the AO and hold all 4 at once it will go in the record books as a defeat. It will not be recorded as Nadal would have won all 4 if fit and many consider fitness as part of the game.