Mens Tennis Forums banner

1 - 20 of 138 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,697 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
The man plays only 3 matches in Rome and wins Roland Garros without dropping a set and losing 7 games in the final. All the myths that he needs many matches in advance to get himself into title-winning form at Roland Garros and that his nemesis, Djokovic, will defeat him or trouble him at Roland Garros when they play there again, have been dispelled.

At this point in time, I do not think Rafa has anything left to prove himself on clay. Would it be a good idea for Rafa to reduce clay workload like skipping (and traveling to) Monte Carlo, Barcelona, Madrid, and/or Rome, i.e., maybe, play one European clay event ahead of Roland Garros, and continue to just show up at Roland Garros and see how he does at Roland Garros? Would it be a good idea for Rafa to conserve his energy thus saved by not playing European clay events and spending that time and energy elsewhere, for instance, by spending his time and energy to hone his skills on hard and grass surface and playing and winning more hardcourt events and grass events, at this stage of his career?

His critics claim that he has not done enough or won enough on hard and grass. At the end of the day, Rafa's greatness can be extended further, if he wins more big titles on hard and grass. It is never too late, as Federer showed to us in the recent past by winning quite a few matches against his archrival, Rafa, and reducing Rafa's H2H lead against him at the tail end of his tennis career. Of course, sure, it also depends on what he wants to do with his tennis career, as he seems to be pretty self-content and self-satisfied with what he already achieved and where he is placed in his tennis career and in the tennis history.

Your thoughts and opinions on the subject are appreciated.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
73 Posts
If you always wins in 3-4 tournaments that gives you prestige, trophies, fame and money, why not play them a year and other and other? They are almost secure victories and some records.

Federer in the last years avoids his worst surface or plays for grass exclusively. Rafa now with 34 can't search desesperately only WTF or AO and modify his style or planning of the year for that.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,697 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
If you always wins in 3-4 tournaments that gives you prestige, trophies, fame and money, why not play them a year and other and other? They are almost secure victories and some records.

Federer in the last years avoids his worst surface or plays for grass exclusively. Rafa now with 34 can't search desesperately only WTF or AO and modify his style or planning of the year for that.
Trophies and money, sure, they will increase; but, is he short of trophies (particularly, trophies on clay) and money?

Prestige and fame. That's the aim and the goal. I think he will earn more prestige and fame by winning more hard and grass big titles and by winning events like ATP Finals, Miami, Paris, Shanghai, that he did not win before. The aim is to plug the holes in the tennis resume and to become a more complete player.

I do not think he will be desperately searching for anything. He did great on hard and grass too so far, by winning 5 hardcourt slams, 2 Wimbledons, Olympics gold on hard, multiple Indian Wells and Canadian Opens, Cincinnati, Queens, Stuttgart, and many other events.

Would you not want to see a player you follow closely to become a more complete player? I still think he has 3 to 4 good years of tennis left in him. That's a good amount of time in sports and about 1/4 of time of a player's career in tennis. Who knows, if he is healthy and fit, he might go on to play tennis until 40.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
73 Posts
Trophies and money, sure, they will increase; but, is he short of trophies (particularly, trophies on clay) and money?

Prestige and fame. That's the aim and the goal. I think he will earn more prestige and fame by winning more hard and grass big titles and by winning events like ATP Finals, Miami, Paris, Shanghai, that he did not win before. The aim is to plug the holes in the tennis resume and to become a more complete player.

I do not think he will be desperately searching for anything. He did great on hard and grass too so far, by winning 5 hardcourt slams, 2 Wimbledons, Olympics gold on hard, multiple Indian Wells and Canadian Opens, Cincinnati, Queens, Stuttgart, and many other events.

Would you not want to see a player you follow closely to become a more complete player? I still think he has 3 to 4 good years of tennis left in him. That's a good amount of time in sports and about 1/4 of time of a player's career in tennis. Who knows, if he is healthy and fit, he might go on to play tennis until 40.
I understand what you say and is a good topic to talk about, but i think that he can't do much more to win Miami or Paris Bercy or another AO. Many times he has arrived to the final and has lost against Djokovic or Federer or the bests at those moments... he do it well but simply he faces someone better than him in the moment of the final. More preparation or avoid clay is not the solution for me.

But of course I would give more value to a Nadal victory off the clay than on it. I loved his Wimbledon victories more than anyone else, for example. I would trade a couple of RGs for one more AO. But life is not utopian.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
770 Posts
Even if his track record is very unbalanced in favor of clay, he cannot afford to avoid this tour, because beyond the titles it offers him, he finds confidence in it, the boost in play, the points and therefore the ranking which keeps him at the top, and therefore for the time being, far from Djokovic on other surfaces, at worst he sees him in the final.

Djokovic is not immune to meeting a difficult opponent on his draw, it is also Nadal's lot, but it is the part of the game, which remains beneficial overall.

Clay is an insured annuity for Nadal, until the end of his career.

As the rafans say, the rest is a bonus.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,428 Posts
No, it would be the worst idea ever. Clay boosts his confidence and he has to rack up as many FOs as he can before age catches up with him. As long as he wins FO the season is a success, and if he manages to win another of the 3 slams it's a nice bonus, but clay is always priority #1.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
170 Posts
Clay Should Be No 1 Priority But If He Wins These Missing Titles It Will Be A Bonus
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,366 Posts
No. His body cant handle a full HC schedule like everyone else.
Clay is the surface that heels his body and confidence.
If anything he should do the opposite of what you said.
Pre AO tournament.
Acapulco and IW skip Miami.
Monte Carlo, Barcelona, Madrid, Rome and RG.
Toronto and USopen.
Skip China and Shanghai
Paris and WTF.
Simple and of course, hopefully no inkuries.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,051 Posts
The man plays only 3 matches in Rome and wins Roland Garros without dropping a set and losing 7 games in the final. All the myths that he needs many matches in advance to get himself into title-winning form at Roland Garros and that his nemesis, Djokovic, will defeat him or trouble him at Roland Garros when they play there again, have been dispelled.

At this point in time, I do not think Rafa has anything left to prove himself on clay. Would it be a good idea for Rafa to reduce clay workload like skipping (and traveling to) Monte Carlo, Barcelona, Madrid, and/or Rome, i.e., maybe, play one European clay event ahead of Roland Garros, and continue to just show up at Roland Garros and see how he does at Roland Garros? Would it be a good idea for Rafa to conserve his energy thus saved by not playing European clay events and spending that time and energy elsewhere, for instance, by spending his time and energy to hone his skills on hard and grass surface and playing and winning more hardcourt events and grass events, at this stage of his career?

His critics claim that he has not done enough or won enough on hard and grass. At the end of the day, Rafa's greatness can be extended further, if he wins more big titles on hard and grass. It is never too late, as Federer showed to us in the recent past by winning quite a few matches against his archrival, Rafa, and reducing Rafa's H2H lead against him at the tail end of his tennis career. Of course, sure, it also depends on what he wants to do with his tennis career, as he seems to be pretty self-content and self-satisfied with what he already achieved and where he is placed in his tennis career and in the tennis history.

Your thoughts and opinions on the subject are appreciated.
It would. Because I can already see the future. Even if Nadal finishes with 24 slams. And Federer and Djokovic finish on 20. But have superior overall records. Which they already do.

They will say Nadal STILL isnt the greatest. Because his slam record is over 66% on clay. Thats always going to be thrown at him. If he could bring it up on the other surfaces over the remainder of his career. One more Wimbledon and two more hardcourt titles. That argument goes out of the window.

That's the dilemma he is in at the moment. Then theres always the lack of weeks as world number one. And no WTFs on his record. This is where Federer and Djokovic fans will make the argument he still cant be the goat. Even if he has more slams.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,697 Posts
Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
I understand what you say and is a good topic to talk about, but i think that he can't do much more to win Miami or Paris Bercy or another AO. Many times he has arrived to the final and has lost against Djokovic or Federer or the bests at those moments... he do it well but simply he faces someone better than him in the moment of the final. More preparation or avoid clay is not the solution for me.

But of course I would give more value to a Nadal victory off the clay than on it. I loved his Wimbledon victories more than anyone else, for example. I would trade a couple of RGs for one more AO. But life is not utopian.
He did not win Wimbledon since 2010 and did not reach Wimbledon final since 2011, after making 5 finals in a row there from 2006 to 2011.

His regular schedule is to play Monte Carlo, Barcelona, Madrid, Rome, and Roland Garros. That "5 clay events in a row" schedule is tiring and he is burning himself out. He then skips playing Stuttgart and/or Queens, plays a couple of exhibition matches on grass, and shows up unprepared at Wimbledon. That's one of the reasons why he was not able to do well at Wimbledon in the past 10 years.

Now, here's a tweaking in the schedule in the future, for example - skip Monte Carlo and Barcelona, play one of Madrid or Rome, and play Roland Garros; just 2 clay events. He can and will still win Roland Garros, by playing only one clay event before Roland Garros. Use the energy thus saved for the grass season. Then play Queens, for sure and play Wimbeldon, and see if he can win Wimbledon again. See, you are just shifting the workload from clay to grass. You are spending less time and energy on your strength (i.e., clay) because you are already great at it, and you are spending more time and energy on your relative weakness (i.e., grass) because you are aiming to get better at it.

The "confidence" thing is all in the mind, as you can see, he won Roland Garros without dropping a set by playing only 3 matches at Rome. He and everyone knows that he is the greatest on clay, and the confidence comes from this fact.

As they say, "practice makes man perfect." I believe in practice and preparation, for sure. You prepare well by playing competitive matches on grass, you get used to grass, and you win Wimbledon. There are no shortcuts to it.

A similar tweak in schedule to win Australian Open, which he did not win since 2009.
 
  • Like
Reactions: nirvana

·
Registered
Joined
·
540 Posts
It's not a bad idea. I would recommend him to play Monte Carlo and Rome before Roland Garros. But he can't because he thinks he has to play Madrid and Barcelona too because he is Spanish.
So it's tough for him. Monte Carlo he has to play for sure because he gets a lot of confidence there because it's his favourite Masters tournament.

In general the schedule is very important for him and since Moya he is better in it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,697 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
No. His body cant handle a full HC schedule like everyone else.
Clay is the surface that heels his body and confidence.
If anything he should do the opposite of what you said.
Pre AO tournament.
Acapulco and IW skip Miami.
Monte Carlo, Barcelona, Madrid, Rome and RG.
Toronto and USopen.
Skip China and Shanghai
Paris and WTF.
Simple and of course, hopefully no inkuries.
No one is asking to play full schedule. Tweak the schedule and prioritize to win the events that he did not win in his career, and knock them off one after the other. For instance, he can target one of Paris or ATP Finals this year, the other one next year, and Miami in 2022.

I don't think he will ever go to China or Cincinnati again, since he last played Beijing, Shanghai, and Cincinnati in 2017. Those are out of the door, and that's fine, since he already won them (Madrid indoors covers Shanghai).
 
  • Like
Reactions: Fargif

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,976 Posts
He did not win Wimbledon since 2010 and did not reach Wimbledon final since 2011, after making 5 finals in a row there from 2006 to 2011.

His regular schedule is to play Monte Carlo, Barcelona, Madrid, Rome, and Roland Garros. That "5 clay events in a row" schedule is tiring and he is burning himself out. He then skips playing Stuttgart and/or Queens, plays a couple of exhibition matches on grass, and shows up unprepared at Wimbledon. That's one of the reasons why he was not able to do well at Wimbledon in the past 10 years.

Now, here's a tweaking in the schedule in the future, for example - skip Monte Carlo and Barcelona, play one of Madrid or Rome, and play Roland Garros; just 2 clay events. He can and will still win Roland Garros, by playing only one clay event before Roland Garros. Use the energy thus saved for the grass season. Then play Queens, for sure and play Wimbeldon, and see if he can win Wimbledon again. See, you are just shifting the workload from clay to grass. You are spending less time and energy on your strength (i.e., clay) because you are already great at it, and you are spending more time and energy on your relative weakness (i.e., grass) because you are aiming to get better at it.

The "confidence" thing is all in the mind, as you can see, he won Roland Garros without dropping a set by playing only 3 matches at Rome. He and everyone knows that he is the greatest on clay, and the confidence comes from this fact.

As they say, "practice makes man perfect." I believe in practice and preparation, for sure. You prepare well by playing competitive matches on grass, you get used to grass, and you win Wimbledon. There are no shortcuts to it.

A similar tweak in schedule to win Australian Open, which he did not win since 2009.
If I were Rafa I also would play only MC and RG in the clay season, and try to focus more on AO, WImbledon (warm up in exho tournament), USO (playing canada before seems a good idea) and the WTF,
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Some of the Clay Season, yes. Or prioritize Madrid over Rome, for example (play Montercarlo-Barcelona-Madrid). To me, it all comes down to whether he can take another AO or Wimbledon, that'd be enough for many to claim he's GOAT and for him get fully satisfied. So this all discussion could change if he somehow managed to win in Australia next year. Winning some M1000 event, like Miami, would be great (as awesome as he was in 2017, he could only be stopped by the old man in that incredible inspiration he had; and I hope he can get that good again on hard).

So he just has to focus on next AO. And, as the last part of the season has never suited him, just seriously focus on Indian Wells before clay season. Anyway, I don't know how the regulation is at his age (in terms of being able to skip a tournament). Grass is quite another matter, he probably can go to Wimby playing a pair of exhibitions and staying focus and strong.

However, his own happiness still remains the factor. And it's nice, he's not obsessed with winning more, or more distributed. It's about winning, enjoying (and clay is clay) and having a long career (until 2024 and Olympic Games, at least).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,239 Posts
Rafa should focus on how to fill the one big gap in his resume and become the second person behing Agassi to achieve a career super grand slam.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
46 Posts
Doubt it. From this point on his career, he will base his schedule on the 4 GS, Clay Masters, possibly IW, CAN. He may tweak his schedule if his Number 2 ranking is in trouble or he has the chance to be the YE 1 he will add few tournaments. Otherwise, he will not.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
46 Posts
Currently he is still UNDECIDED whether to play Paris and WTF or not. Thiem is just 825 ranking points away from RAFA.If Thiem Plays Paris and WTF and goes DEEP he may snatch the Number 2 ranking from Nadal. If this the case, Rafa will want to avoid the complications of being the 3rd seed and may face Djokovic in SF in AUS Open. I think he might play Paris and WTF.
 
1 - 20 of 138 Posts
Top