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Old 05-25-2004, 09:06 AM   #46
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Default Re: David at RG....

Match of the day: Nalbandian (No8) v Gasquet
By FFT
Monday, May 24, 2004

For the third year in a row, Richard Gasquet has drawn the short
straw at Roland Garros. After losing in the first round to subsequent
winner Albert Costa in 2002, and then again to tough cookie Nicolas
Lapentti in 2003, the French teenage prodigy was hoping for a slice
of fortune when the names came out of the hat this year. No such
luck. Argentina's world No8 David Nalbandian stands between him
and a
first-ever appearance in the second round.

THE STAGE

Richard Gasquet is not yet 18 years old (his birthday is not until 18
June), yet for the past couple of years he has been under the full
glare of the media spotlight in France. After bursting onto the scene
with some blinding displays at Monte Carlo back in 2002, some
expected him to be challenging for major trophies before long. That
has not happened, and as a result the boy from Sérignan has come
in
for more than his fair share of criticism. Gasquet now stands at 106
in the world rankings after swapping coaches in recent months. Eric
Winogradsky was replaced briefly by Tarik Benhabiles before his
father, Francis, took back the reigns, having coached Richard
throughout his formative years. A South American tour at the start of
the year gave him the opportunity to measure up against some of the
best clay court specialists. Two wins over Chile's Nicolas Massu
were
particularly encouraging, and he was expecting to call on that
positive experience to help him progress beyond the opening round at
Roland Garros for the first time. The draw has been unkind though,
and he will need to be firing on all cylinders if he is to upset his
first round opponent, Nalbandian.
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Old 05-25-2004, 09:07 AM   #47
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Default Re: David at RG....

Nalbandian is an atypical Argentinian. Unlike the vast majority of
his compatriots, the No8 seed is most at home on fast surfaces.
Nalbandian came out of nowhere to make it to the Wimbledon final back
in 2002. At Roland Garros, he has never progressed past the third
round, but that is a misleading stat. For Nalbandian can play on
clay, and play well, as demonstrated by his appearance in the final
of the ATP Masters Series in Rome, in early May. Indeed, that display
makes him an outsider for the title, providing of course he gets past
Gasquet in the first round.

KEYS TO THE MATCH

Nalbandian possesses two main attributes when it comes to winning on
clay: power and stamina. A supreme athlete, the South American also
deploys one of the best services on the circuit. He is an all-round
player, as comfortable at the net as he is in the back court. His
only weakness is a relative lack of patience compared to the top clay
court aficionados, although that should not prove a failing here as
Gasquet will not be looking to make the match last in any case. The
youngster is a natural talent, proud owner of one of the best
backhands around, and capable of unleashing winners form anywhere.
His service is not rock solid though, especially second time around.
In front of his home fans, he might just be ready to pull off the
first real `coup' of his career. To do that he will need to
hold his
nerve, especially if the match drags on, and therein lies the
greatest challenge of all for the 17-year-old.

HEAD TO HEAD: 1-0 NALBANDIAN
The two met for the first and only time at Monte Carlo, in the first
round, last year. The Argentinian won comfortably on that occasion, 6-
4 6-0. But young Richard is fitter and stronger this time around.
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Old 05-25-2004, 09:08 AM   #48
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Default Re: David at RG....

seems to me that David gives the press a hard time.. in Rome he was a clay specialist, now he is an a-typical Argentinian...
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Old 05-25-2004, 10:47 AM   #49
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Default Re: David at RG....

and he has a great serve? OK.....and I am the most popular poster on the MTF...
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Old 05-25-2004, 11:17 AM   #50
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Default Re: David at RG....

well if they write it, it must be true..Hope he can show us today his great serve!
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Old 05-25-2004, 11:17 AM   #51
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Default Re: David at RG....

Btw David looked today in parctise fine and happy!
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Old 05-25-2004, 01:18 PM   #52
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Default Re: David at RG....

Quote:
Originally Posted by bovenbuuf
well if they write it, it must be true..Hope he can show us today his great serve!
If we go on the basis of Wertheim's observation that Robin Soderling is a "dark horse" in the FO, then I guess they're right about David's serve.....
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Old 05-25-2004, 04:58 PM   #53
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Default Re: David at RG....

Great win David!! 6-4, 7-5, 7-6. Glad he got out of that in 3 sets

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Old 05-25-2004, 05:12 PM   #54
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Default Re: David at RG....

yes it was great
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Old 05-25-2004, 05:19 PM   #55
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Default Re: David at RG....

yea david.....you did me proud...
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Old 05-25-2004, 07:57 PM   #56
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Default Re: David at RG....

Congrats David
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Old 05-25-2004, 08:14 PM   #57
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Default Re: David at RG....

He could have won 6-4 that last set or even 7-5, but he did it in a TB. It's ok, I'm glad he won and is in the second round!
I guess this Falla guy won't be a problem...what do you say?
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Old 05-25-2004, 11:06 PM   #58
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Default Re: David at RG....

Hmm...I think that no, that he won't be a problem, it's his 1st Grand Slam, so he must be a bit nervous yet....though we must not get that confident.

But no matter what I think it won't be a too hard task for David.
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Old 05-26-2004, 02:31 AM   #59
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Default Re: David at RG....

hey, sorry for late congrats after my sweet sleeping!!! David's game make me too tired over midnight Glad that he finally finish it in 3 sets, or i have to stay the whole night without sleeping!!
Gasquet is a good and right opponent for david, and winning over him can help david adapt the court and atmosphere in RG. I believe he can do better and better in next rounds
As to his "great" serving........ at least he hit some aces yesterday!
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Old 05-26-2004, 11:32 AM   #60
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Default Re: David at RG....

David Nalbandian.
"It wasn't my best match, but the important thing is to win in the
first rounds. But I can play better, I'm sure. This is not the
surface I like the best and I was never able to play well here. I
hope I can make it this time"
Mancini(DC coach):
"If David is concentrated, he can make a well Roland garros. He has
the game, the strength to do well in any surface. For players of his
level, is very important to gather some confidence in the first week
matches, so then he can face the second with a good rythm and,
playing short matches, without much tiredness. These sunny days are
going to it easier for him because the courts will be faster"
Guy Forget (France DC coach)
"David Nalbandian is a player that improved a lot in the last year
and a half. I'm impressed by his strength, he's very consistent and
it's good that he plays better in fast surfaces than in clay, because
that will help him to get more points to go up in the ranking. He is
already one of the best, he's young and has time to improve. Besides,
he looks like a very gentle kid, with good manners, which is very
hard to find nowadays".
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