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Discussion Starter #1
Gutted for Paulo, he deserved to win the match. By far the better player.

Rafa found his forehand just in time, but a terribly ugly match from him. I don't subscribe to all the moonballing nonsense, but I'm man enough to admit that today he resorted to moonballing. Absolutely no zip to any of his shots, forehand was awful for a set and a half and his backhand could barely clear the service box. That's not the Rafael Nadal I became a fan of, but magnificent heart as always saw him through. Came up with the good on the big points.

Great effort from Paulo, was very close to a deserved win. He'll be top 10 soon though :yeah:
 

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Nadal escapes once again...

Very good match by PHM. Too bad he's a headcase too.
 

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Mammoths
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How was he by far the better player? He lost the match... he got broken multiple times in the third set.

Nadal deserved his victory, it really is that simple...
 

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Just couldnt quite hold it together. By no means a choke but he did tank a few important points in the 2nd
 

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As expected really... PHM just didn't have the intensity to win more than one set. Credit has to go to Nadal for sticking in their whilst being comprehensivly outplayed for large parts of the match.
 

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Mathieu 2/11 on BP's

Nadal 4/9 on BP's

I guess that tells the story and to beat someone you have to be able to take your chances when it matters. Nadal did that and Mathiue didn't.

This match went exactly as many expected it to, Mathieu outplaying Nadal for stretches but when it came to the crunch those shots which are either winners or UE's were all UE's and that's not good enough against Nadal.
 

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Overall, that is the best I have seen PHM play in quite a while. Congrats to him for a great match.

Rafa...man, like last night, didn't play his best. Didn't even come close to it. But when he really needed to, he stepped it up. The sign of a true champion. If it's even possible, I have gained even more respect for him.:worship:

Can he get an easy match now? Seriously.:eek:

And I predicted a 3 setter, so go me!:p
 

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Congrats Mathieu, you really made French tennis proud.

Those amazing forehands into the net :worship:

Only a French player can do it. Argentinian players try their best, but they can't handle the power of the French choke. Look at his break point conversion, that's world class! :worship:
 

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Rafa is such a smart player. Even dominated in the rallies, he found a way to win this. PHM, well, it wasn't as terrible mentally as many people will write here soon, but this match proves again that tennis match can turn around on one or two points.
 

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Mammoths
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only 43 percent of first serves in from PHM, that is just not good enough.

On the break points PHM was 2/11 and Nadal was 4/9. Once again Nadal's ability to play the big points well is absolutely key to him winning the match.
 

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completely expected this guy is world no.1 choking stakes.

Congrats Rafa!!!! :banana:
 

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Discussion Starter #18
How was he by far the better player? He lost the match... he got broken multiple times in the third set.

Nadal deserved his victory, it really is that simple...
He was by far the better player, Nadal played the big points well and that's about it. He won the match due to his huge heart, not due to any good play. It was pretty dreadful from start to finish, and he's going to get another Gonzalez-esque mauling if he plays like that all hard court season.
 
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