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Sinner's easy power is truly Berdych-like. Nadal was quite old and slow and troubled a lot by consistent power (some naughty angled BHs as well, boy's got skill) but had the guile and class to squeeze through as the young sinner predictably got tight in the lead. Nadal himself was finally able to relax up two sets and largely hit Sinner off court in the third.
 

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I said this before, but Nadal is playing even worse than Rome. Had Sinner (who isn't even that good) not been so mentally weak, he could’ve easily won the match.

However, I am glad Nadal beat Sinner, and I will be rooting for Nadal to reach the final. Vamos!
 

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Expected result and expected scenario. But you won't prevent me from being again very impressed by Sinner. During a set and a half, he was the one dictating points with authority. Then Nadal adjusted and proceeded to undermine his opponent's game as usual, letting speak his experience on important points.

But again, Sinner, 19 yo, just wow.
 

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Nadal should thank his lucky stars that Sinner is so young and inexperienced. Give it a couple of years and Sinner would've handedly beaten him.

Djokovic will eat Nadal alive - unless Schwartzman gets there first that is.
 

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Sinner's easy power is truly Berdych-like. Nadal was quite old and slow and troubled a lot by consistent power (some naughty angled BHs as well, boy's got skill) but had the guile and class to squeeze through as the young sinner predictably got tight in the lead. Nadal himself was finally able to relax up two sets and largely hit Sinner off court in the third.
Well, Berdych was Nadal's pigeon :p
 

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Totally predictable match, knew Rafa would have some struggles early facing a dangerous young player for the first time in these conditions, very similar to the Berrettini semi at US Open. But he brought it home really strong.
 

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Expected result and expected scenario. But you won't prevent me from being again very impressed by Sinner. During a set and a half, he was the one dictating points with authority. Then Nadal adjusted and proceeded to undermine his opponent's game as usual, letting speak his experience on important points.

But again, Sinner, 19 yo, just wow.
No, Rafa's opponents always choke, Rafa is incredibly lucky, don't you believe Emotion, Dinner Warrior and other haters, I mean, experts? They know everything about tennis of course.
 

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Very lucky that it wasn’t a long 5 setter. 3 year old Sinner choked while serving with leads in first 2 sets.
 

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Kinda disappointing by Sinner, because he started strong but then just stagnated. He was swinging freely and hitting great during parts of the match, yet he managed to lose almost every big point.
Sinner also chose to hit his backhand into Rafa's forehand constantly, which is a strange choice of strategy. I mean, going after Rafa's forehand is excellent as a mix-up, but that wasn't what Sinner was doing. For long parts it was like Jannik forgot how to hit a backhand DTL.

As for Nadal... he was okay. But he won this match through experience rather than domination. Signs of improvement in the 3rd set though.

Sinner has a big game but if it's not working, like today, he's in trouble. He's a bit limited, since he cannot defend as well as Diego or Thiem. But if he keeps improving he'll win plenty of big titles in his career.
 
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Nadal improved in third but his level overall was not great. Clearly he doesn't enjoy the conditions but he'll need to do better to win the whole thing.
 

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Absolutely fearless by Jannik in the first two sets, he deserves all the credit there is for that, but after losing those two he clearly also lost the belief on that he could come back and win the match. And to be honest, I don't think he could've done that, no matter what he did or tried. Not his time yet, as many of us over here were saying before the match.

Rafa not playing at the level I've seen from him so many times at PC. Age is clearly catching up with him, just like all the rest. Will be interesting to see how he copes against Diego.
 

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Quite the match I expected, a close loss, but a 3rd set where Sinner didn't choke anymore as he gave up on the score and got broken handily.

Still he was able to break Nadal 2x and he was playing till 2nd set 4-4 absolutely on par with Nadal.
Not a classic, but a memorable match anyway.

Also this Nadal needs to raise his level a couple notches to beat Schwartzman comfortably and to have any chance vs Djokovic in the final...
 
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I think this was a good match to work Nadal into championship form. Obviously the late, late start and the conditions might have been a reason for the slowness. I think Diego will be the match that rounds Nadal into top form.
 

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Absolutely fearless by Jannik in the first two sets, he deserves all the credit there is for that, but after losing those two he clearly also lost the belief on that he could come back and win the match. And to be honest, I don't think he could've done that, no matter what he did or tried. Not his time yet, as many of us over here were saying before the match.

Rafa not playing at the level I've seen from him so many times at PC. Age is clearly catching up with him, just like all the rest. Will be interesting to see how he copes against Diego.
Age or the lack of competitive matches going into RG coupled with unusual conditions. Why should 34 be any different than 33?
 
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