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A pretty intense match, both wanted to win and the crowd was in it. BP saving mastersclass from Nadal but also dropped a break lead in both odd sets. Some nervy errors from both including a bunch of DFs. Nice match for an exho.
 

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Lol
 

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VAMOS RAFA!!! This match looked WAY different than 99.99% of exhibitions; it was extremely intense and neither wanted to win. Great to see Rafa find a way even when not serving his best. Love the competitiveness from both guys. Rafa was the only one that could flummox and stop the Stef train at the end of 2019.

side-note that only I may enjoy: Stef now has more racket smashes (1) in exhibitions than Rafa has in his entire career #sportsmanshipaward

side-note to the side-note: Stef needs to get this shoelace thing under control. If it truly is a problem and not gamesmanship, he needs some different shoes bc these Adidas ones aren’t cutting it for him.
 

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VAMOS RAFA!!! This match looked WAY different than 99.99% of exhibitions; it was extremely intense and neither wanted to win. Great to see Rafa find a way even when not serving his best. Love the competitiveness from both guys. Rafa was the only one that could flummox and stop the Stef train at the end of 2019.

side-note that only I may enjoy: Stef now has more racket smashes (1) in exhibitions than Rafa has in his entire career #sportsmanshipaward

side-note to the side-note: Stef needs to get this shoelace thing under control. If it truly is a problem and not gamesmanship, he needs some different shoes bc these Adidas ones aren’t cutting it for him.
Nice worship.
 

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Lil' ChiChi will stay bored of Nadal winning for some more time it seems...
 

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Only got to see the second set - the intensity was higher than some of slam quarters. Both were extremely pissed at some point. The crowd was very enthusiastic, too. Definitely got its money worth. Not the worst preparation for the upcoming ATP Cup.
 

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Very high level match, great to see it. Both guys are playing well and have kept their form from the end of last season. Stef won YEC but this loss and his only loss in RR was to Rafa. Nadal meanwhile winning DC pretty much single handedly again clearly gave him a lot of good confidence and hope he can carry it through ATP Cup and Melbourne. Reminded me of Doha 17 F, a low-stakes but high profile clash of 2 leading contenders for the AO crown. The low-stakes, historically, not financially, allow a higher level to be played generally than the nerves found in AO SF and F type matches.

Stef, his game is great but still don't like his personality. Still with the shoes, smashing racquet in a freaking exho, and then the overhead smash right at Rafa, what was that all about? 1-1 in the 3rd he did it, what a clown. Whole court was open. He missed it too in anger. So very happy Nadal was able to win this but this just lets us further know AO will be very close and tight and anyone can win.
 

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I just don't understand why Mubadala was moved that early in December, not gonna work out as a form-conserving tourney.
Not even as a form building one either.
 

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I just don't understand why Mubadala was pulled that early in December, not gonna work out as a form-conserving tourney.
Yes usually it is much later, but the calendar is weird this year. Christmas is on a Wednesday, which allows players home for Xmas, and then time to go to AUS for ATP Cup. Guys want to get there earlier this year as ATP Cup is supposed to be a thing. Abu Dhabi I think made the right call to get a great crowd and tournament level and atmosphere, and they made it happen

Not meant to be form conserving, but profitable for the organizers. Tenniswise it gives us a little checkpoint mid-off season to see where these guys are. Djokovic needs to get to work. Nadal and Stef are right there.

ATP Cup starts in 15 days
 

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This match looked like a final of big tournament, not an exhibition match.
A lot of tension between both of players.

Stef tried to win too much, he had a meltdown from the end of the 2nd set to the middle of the 3rd set and it cost him this match. He still needs to mature as a player, not to invest himself in useless actions on court, but in quality of his play.

He wants to win vs Nadal so much, his motivation will be at 500% next time when they will meet, but it needs to be translated into better display.
 
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I enjoyed the match a lot. I guess Stef didn't get the memo that this is a demo. That was intense. Most of the match I had the iimpression that Tsitsi was superior but at the end Rafa won. I think Tsitsi is ready for the new season, Rafa and Nole, not yet.
 

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Stef, his game is great but still don't like his personality. Still with the shoes, smashing racquet in a freaking exho, and then the overhead smash right at Rafa, what was that all about? 1-1 in the 3rd he did it, what a clown. Whole court was open. He missed it too in anger. So very happy Nadal was able to win this but this just lets us further know AO will be very close and tight and anyone can win.
My thoughts exactly. I had a good opinion of Tsitsipas until I actually saw him play and his antics on court. That smash was just unprofessional and could've hurt someone in the audience. The guy behaves very arrogantly and self-entitled. A lot to learn from Rafa.

PS Fantastic match. It was actually better than many slam and masters matches in the 2019 season, and easily. Rafa seems to be in good forms, save those bleeps on 5:4 and 4:2 with some weird errors and lack of consistency but he'll correct that. I feel he might easily win AO 2020. Haters already scared. They will soon go into overdrive with their hate, I'm sure.
 

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I’m very worried about Nadal. Ok, he was so good in this exhibition. Nice. But, it is useless to be too good too soon. He had not time to rest (not a lot just Disney). He played 3 hours in this match (good to see this level but useless for me). And after that, ATP Cup. I don’t want the injury at AO...
 

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Yeah, played more like a GS QF than an exho. Tsisipas was serving like a beast and is playing great tennis atm, but I find him diva-ish in a very unfunny and unappealing way. Not sure if this is going to be his breakthrough season, with at least a GS title, or if he's just playing on a massive confidence high and will come down to earth after a couple of bad losses.
 

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I enjoyed the match a lot. I guess Stef didn't get the memo that this is a demo.
Neither did Rafa. But for him that's not much of a problem. Nadal knows how to win such matches. While Tsitsipas, as much as I approve his hunger, seems to me his eagerness gets in the way sometimes.
 
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