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Match report

Novak Djokovic © Tennistalk.com
French Open
4th round
6/3/12 1 2 3 4 5 Tot
rs  Novak Djokovic 4 6 6 7 6 3
it  Andreas Seppi 6 7 3 5 3 2
Andreas Seppi © Tennistalk.com
  • Djokovic pushed to the brink by Seppi

    6/3/12 5:38 PM | Kelli DeMario
    World No. 1 Novak Djokovic fought his way into the quarterfinals after trailing 22nd seed Andreas Seppi by two sets to love. The top seed sealed the victory in five sets, 4-6, 6-7(5), 6-3, 7-5, 6-3.

    World No. 1 Novak Djokovic is through to the French Open quarterfinals, having rallied to outlast Italy’s Andreas Seppi in five sets. The Serbian star fell behind two sets but regrouped to win the round of 16 match in five, 4-6, 6-7(5), 6-3, 7-5, 6-3.

    After leveling the match at two sets apiece, Djokovic broke to 4-2 in the decider as Seppi hit a double-fault. The Italian had an immediate break chance at 2-4, but could not convert. Match point came at 5-3 for the No. 1 seed, who closed on a swinging volley winner.

    Djokovic completed the fourth-round effort with 44 winners, five aces and nine breaks of serve.

    He will meet either 5th seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga or 18th seed Stanislas Wawrinka for a place in the semifinals.

    Find the latest tennis odds at Unibet.com

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Comments

Novak at his best

Very good match. Novak will win this year French open. sureee

Good luck

anji123 , 6/3/12 5:51 PM


I bet you were not saying that when he was 2 sets and a break down?!!!!...............were you?!!!

Let me remind you...........................RAFA IS NO SEPPI.......................you hear me?!!!!!! (neither is Fed, for that matter)

VAMOS!!!!

Monalysa , 6/3/12 6:12 PM


even at 2 sets down (he was never a break down in the 3rd) i knew there would only be one winner. i'd say he's safely through to the semis now. don't see wawrinka or tsonga posing much of a threat

Sib69 , 6/3/12 6:17 PM


He's come from 2 down to beat Fed so no surprise that he did it against Seppi. This FO is definitely Nadal's to lose. Djoker doesn't like wind or heavy damp clay it seems. Very small chance of him winning a DjokerSlam now.

chr18 , 6/3/12 6:21 PM


^^^^exactly! Doesn't mean he will win it, but to say it is his to lose is a fair comment.

rafaisthebest , 6/3/12 6:46 PM


Nole was way below par today. I don't blame his fans for seeing his cup half full instead of half empty.

If he meets Rafa in the fianl, Rafa will have to be playing at 50% of his form right now to lose to Nole.

nadline , 6/3/12 7:21 PM


LOL...correct me if I am wrong...poor me...
So if Nole win the RG... it is coz Rafa lost it... not that Nole won it???
Will Rafa play 100 or 50%... and Nole also... that has something with other guy :))
Rafa is not Seppi... and Nole is not Schwank...

zare , 6/3/12 8:14 PM


...any way... they are not in finale yet...Fed, tsonga Tipsy, Almafro, Ferrer probably have to say something about it ....
We are going to ahead....

zare , 6/3/12 8:16 PM


zare, I did say 'IF' they meet in the final.

nadline , 6/3/12 8:24 PM


I'm pretty sure Nole will have no trouble passing either Tsonga or Wawa in the next round.

nadline , 6/3/12 8:29 PM


^^^no more baby... no more... no comments for you!

zare , 6/3/12 8:31 PM


reminds me of his match against tomic in wimby 11 in which he was just atrocious, the way he played in the next rounds against tsonga and rafa was one of the best i have seen him play on grass, any thing can happen.....

akd2011 , 6/3/12 9:36 PM


There is one aspect that people seem to forget. Nole being pushed to 5 sets may have been the worst thing for Wawrinka/Tsonga, Federer or Nadal (if they meet). Nole was cruising for the first three matches, he got complacent against a guy who only took two sets off of him, shouldn't happen but it did. Add to that Seppis good play, his horrible play, and he was down 2:0. But don't you think, hejust got more difficult to beat? I mean, winning like this, coming back from 0:2, surely must raise his confidence, no? He played his worst tennis in years, couldn't suck more, yet he won against a guy who is playing the best tennis of his life

Not to mention he probably won't get careless like that anymore. I've seen it in Rome as well, and he paid the price against Rafa in the final. Today, for example, he was 9/22 for break points...that is not Novak Djokovic who is known for taking every chance he gets.

In conclusion, don't expect this Novak in the next matches, he's not any easier to beat. In fact, this match match may have been a blessing in disguise (if he learned anything from it).

nemanja230690 , 6/3/12 10:40 PM


^^^

You think that Seppi played the best tennis of his life? With what, over 70 UE's? Are you kidding? Nole beat a guy who was playing some crappy tennis and it took him a comeback from two sets down. This should give him confidence? He is still in the tournament. He will have to raise his level of play now. He was fortunate to play a bad match on a day when his opponent was also bad.

Nativenewyorker , 6/3/12 11:01 PM


This was one match in a possible 7 Novak has to play at RG. I cannot believe anyone thought Novak was going to lose this match, even when he was 2 sets down, c'mon! Nobody in their right mind is going to infer much and make earth shattering conclusions from it either way. To say that because he was pushed to 5 sets he will win the tourny or that because he was pushed to 5 sets he will lose....................it's nonsensne, you cannot make such inferences based on one match, also at this stage of the tourny!

Rafa was pushed to 5 sets by Isner last year and won the tournament. Yesterday most Rafans agreed that Rafa had a bad day by his standards..............but nobody freaked out because it's too early to do that. Okay, Novak's bad day was worse but I still do not expect today's Novak to turn up on Tuesday. Still plenty of time to improve/adjust. In the first week, it's not about playing lights out, it's about winning and advancing to the next round.

We will only start to get proper signals of how this tourny will pan out when we get to the Quarters........................

RG2012 starts tomorrow imo....................


rafaisthebest , 6/3/12 11:02 PM


I didnt mean that this was was his best tennis match but rather that he is in the best form of his career. First time ever in a 4th round of a GS, won Belgrade recently and had a couple of other decent results. And his career best ATP ranking suggests the same thing.

Oh, and i thought he played quite well in the first two sets.

nemanja230690 , 6/3/12 11:10 PM


nemanja230690 , 6/3/12 11:15 PM


Well, i am not sure why some of the posters here were giving so much conditions to the 'difficult' windy conditions. No question was asked in the press conference about the conditions and djokovic also did not mention any such thing when assessing the match. He thought his game was off track..according to him he served well but other parts of his game were too flashy .

It was clear djokovic did not move that well today. Now what does movement have to do with wind? yes there can be a link but not such a significant one. is djokovic really confident like last year? NO. How can he be? last year he came here with a 38-0 record or what? this year he comes here with 5 losses ! if he's human, the confidence level has to be lower.

But one great thing about djokovic, he is an inspiring fighter now ! the nole of old might have wilted today but nole now just does not surrender, he is very tough to fend off ! Currently it's the toughest to close out matches and sets against nole

vamosrafa , 6/3/12 11:30 PM


argghh my typos ! line 1 ** 'giving so much IMPORTANCE to ...'

vamosrafa , 6/3/12 11:33 PM


The fact that Nole was pushed to five sets by Seppi will by no means improve his confidence level...do you guys really think that Nole expected he would be even tested by Seppi? I believe this came as a BIG surprise to him and his team as well, especially after he demolished the qualifier two days earlier. There is no way that Nole is going to get stronger just because he "suffered" against Seppi. Nole now has all sorts of doubts in his head, while Tsonga/Fed/ Rafa may think: "well, no more of that invisibility stuff for Nole"...Nothing is given, of course, but so far Rafa's by OUR HIGH STANDARDS worst day looks way better than most of the top 4 ok days...

RG2012 starts tomorrow imo
rafaisthebest , 6/3/12 11:02 PM

not for Serena, Azarenka, Carolina, Agneska, Svetlana...:)

natashao , 6/4/12 12:36 AM


"...do you guys really think that Nole expected he would be even tested by Seppi? I believe this came as a BIG surprise to him and his team as well, especially after he demolished the qualifier two days earlier."

The key word to how well he played is 'qualifier". It's easy to blow off a quali and look imperious, however, it's not so easy to blow off a player ranked in the top 20,/30, who has played some tough matches, and is match grooved, but also very tired. Most ot the top 4 have got qualis and very low-ranked players, en route to R16, and it's the reason some of them become so vulnerable. Had Seppi held his nerve in the third set, Djokovic would have been toast.

With respect to Djokovic's movement, he has been slipping big time at RG. I'm baffled coz there were complaints about Madrid being too slippery. Now, what's wrong with RG, is it also too slipperyalso? How many times can the surface be blamed for mediocre performance?

scoretracker , 6/4/12 1:12 AM


I also find it strange that Nole was slipping all over the place. Nole normally doesn't have problem moving on clay. The commentators kept mentioning that the conditions were heavy, so I thought there was rain the night before resulting in more damp surface and thus heavy conditions. It reminded me of FO 2010 when there were rain resulting in damp, heavy and slippery conditions and that's where Sod beat Fed in the QF and many clay court specialists fell by the wayside. Hence my remarks about 'atrocious conditions'.

If it's only the wind but there's no rain, and yet Nole was slipping around then that's not a good sign for him. I did note that Seppi had no problem moving around, hardly slipping and that might be why he had no problems hitting his shots and got most of them where he wanted to, and he was serving well in the first two sets.

I wonder now why the commentators consider the conditions as 'heavy'. Nole certainly was not playing his best tennis yesterday. If he was slipping even on normal dry clay, then it's a worrying sign for him, as movement was/is an important part of his game. I don't think he can play his best tennis if he's not moving well on clay under normal conditions.

Rafa OTOH has no problem moving on clay under any conditions as so proven year after year. He can handle playing in any conditions on clay, and I've to say that sometimes these commentators talked too much about low bouncing or high bouncing surfaces favoring this or that player. To me as long as it's on clay, Rafa can beat anyone when Rafa is playing his best tennis.

luckystar , 6/4/12 2:38 AM


What I find kind of absurd, is how when Nole blasted his opponents off the court in his first two matches, he was supposedly getting his mojo back. Now that he managed to claw his way back into the match against a guy like Seppi from two sets down and get the win, he supposedly is a sure thing for the win.

I don't get how it can change on a dime. Nole was lucky today. As bad as he was, Seppi was even worse. This is a guy who he could beat with one hand tied behind his back. I don't blame the windy conditions. Both players had to play and somehow Seppi didn't have a problem. The fact is that Nole should have dispatched Seppi in three straight sets. I don't know how you get confidence from struggling to beat a guy who on paper cannot beat you.

Nativenewyorker , 6/4/12 3:26 AM


definitely doesn't start tomorrow. Already been some hugely impactful matches. As far as I'm concerned, nothing on Monday (im counting Delpo-Berdych as a Sunday match) has any bearing on the final outcome of the tournament.

RickyDimon , 6/4/12 4:09 AM


Native, on another site, probably espn, one of the writers expresses a view similar to luckystar's that Djokovic's 5 set Houdini act could make him more difficult to defeat in subsequent rounds.

vij , 6/4/12 5:12 AM


I hasten to add that I don't agree with lucky or that writer but just that lucky is not alone in his view.

vij , 6/4/12 5:17 AM


vij,

I am sure there are people with that opinion. They have a right to it. I am just expressing my own. You never know quite how any match will affect a player. I was just trying to point out the contradictory comments after Nole quickly dispatched his first two opponents and then had such a problem with Seppi. First he is back on track because he is winning easily, but then he will win this tournament because he managed to finally win a match against a guy who he should have beaten in straight sets. I don't follow that logic. But of course, everyone is free to have their say.

Ricky,

Thanks for keeping it real.

Nativenewyorker , 6/4/12 5:25 AM


What a match! Sat through the entire 5 sets, and genuinely though nole was going to lose at some points, so glad he pulled through! Not sure though how he needed 5 sets to get past Seppi, but the guy was playing amazing tennis. Hope this match gets Nole his focus back. Thankfully Wawrinka and Tsonga are also playing 5-setters.

mriiidula , 6/4/12 5:32 AM


Only Nole knows it himself whether he'll be confident or not, after such a match. We can only guess. My take is: if he struggles to move around on normal clay, ie not damp slippery clay, then I think Nole's confidence would have gone down a notch after this match. Afterall, he struggled to put away an opponent he owned all along, what positive to take away from such a match?

However, if it's not under normal conditions that he struggled, ie other than the wind, he also had to deal with slippery damp clay surface, and yet he managed to survive, then he might feel all positive, that no matter what conditions, he still could pull through. Moreover, he may feel that he'll play better under normal circumstances.

Like I said, we can only guess, nobody knows except Nole himself. Whether Nole is more confident or not, it won't change the fact that Rafa is playing very well this FO, and remains on track for his 7th title here.

luckystar , 6/4/12 6:11 AM


lucky,

Regarding your last post @ 6:11 am, I completely agree with you! Especially with your very last sentence! :)

Tsonga is two games from the match. We don't know how the interruption and starting tomorrow will affect the players. It's tough. If Tsonga can close it out in routine fashion quickly, then that will help him to be ready for Nole the next day. But it's never easy to have to play three days in a row.

However, if Tsonga can't close it out quickly, then who knows. Anything could happen and whoever wins won't have much of a chance against Nole. It's true he did play five sets but at least he got his match done that day.

I really think it will be even more difficult for Delpo and Berdy. They only played three sets and Delpo was up two sets to one. He didn't look too happy when they suspended play. You can sometimes feel that you have the momentum and never know what will happen coming back out on the court the next day to finish the match.

By the way, are they ever going to come into the 21st century and get lights at RG?

Nativenewyorker , 6/4/12 7:49 AM


natashao, 6/4/12 12:36 AM

Ooops, how could I forget those fine ladies who are no longer in the tourny? I blame TT! They don't cover WTA so I don't as well...................

rafaisthebest , 6/4/12 7:52 AM


Sustitute Rafa for Nole against Seppi yesterday, I don't think ANYONE would be interpreting the problems Nole had in winning that match, to mean it would make him more confident. Some players are teflon coated, it doesn't matter how badly they play, it's always a positive for them. Even when Rafa tans the hyde of his opponents in easy straight sets, someone will always come up to criticise him.

nadline , 6/4/12 7:54 AM


And that's because Rafa is the king of clay and Nole is not. So for Nole confidence is important for him on clay (and even grass I may add), and he slipping and almost falling on clay doesn't bode well for him, worse when it is not even slippery clay that we're talking about.

As for Rafa, not to worry, he managed alright even when on slippery clay, like he did at FO2010. I've no doubt about it, and like I said before, whether it's dry clay or damp clay, slippery or non slippery clay, slow clay or fast clay, Rafa can win on them all the same, it's a matter of whether he want to do it quickly or not.

luckystar , 6/4/12 8:20 AM


Nole almost played his way out of the tournament. Strange shot selection in the match, to many UE, the touch wasn't there, forehand was off and his returns weren't that great.

Seppi took full advantage of that, even though he also didn't play that great. Horrible match to watch.

Bonker , 6/4/12 8:30 AM


I have to agree with nadline's comment @ 7:54 am. Of course, we all went through this last year when Isner took Rafa to five sets in his first match. As nerve-wracking as that was, it was even worse to read the stuff here and elsewhere. Now that first week at RG last year was Rafa struggling.

I agree that if it was Rafa performing that way against Seppi today, the so-called experts would be writing off the King of Clay.

Nativenewyorker , 6/4/12 9:32 AM


vamosrafa, 6/3/12 11:30 PM

My sentiments exactly, regarding Nole's footwork. It's what cause him problems in my view, not the conditions, not Seppi. Seppi was busy doing a good impression of how to self-destruct all on his lonesome.

It was embarrassing hearing Fred Stolle and his side-kick blame the wind for Nole's footwork problems!

I am not a member of Nole's inner circle but I suspect that is what will concern them the most about yesterday's match. Tignor in his write-up even suggested Nole should consider changing his shoes, so a lot of people noticed the issue with his movement.

But like I said before, If we noticed it, he and his team sure did too! They will have it corrected by Tuesday otherwise Nole is toast because without proper movement, the big guys will have him for breakfast sooner rather than later................

rafaisthebest , 6/4/12 9:47 AM


Sorry Ricky, MY RG starts today............what with these math-ups today:

Tipsy/Almagro;
Muzza/Reeshad

No gimmes about these 2 matches..................

Regarding Rafa's match, what I'll be watching out for is how his serve's doing. And today is when I expect Novak to be doing some re-calibration after yesterday's scare!

So yeah, for me, we're getting into the business end of the tournament.........

Yummy....

rafaisthebest , 6/4/12 9:58 AM


Nole has had his share of bad matches in Grand Slam wins - the only two really clean performances throughout were at the AO 2008 and 2011. Someone on here mentioned last year's Wimbledon - where he looked horrible against Tomic, but then again he found his range quite spectacularly in the next two matches - the rest is history.

I think Nole definitely knows to turn it on on the big occasion. Whether that will be enough this RG is a different story altogether. Seems like a few moments of cockiness last year against Federer might have cost him his best chance to win the FO yet.

samprallica , 6/4/12 10:24 AM


awww chr18, we care so much about you being disappointed ! you FORCED me to use such language. I seldom use harsh words here

Regarding the match, I think nole will be just fine in his next match. he'l be moving well and it would take us all a couple of mins to say 'wow he is back to his usual self , no prblems today'. That is quite likely i think . Nothing set in stone but lets see..

vamosrafa , 6/4/12 12:55 PM


As an amateur sports-person myself I know how it feels to just feel "not on" on any given day......................that's why I do not attach much significance to a "day off". I only start getting concerned when it becomes a pattern.................

rafaisthebest , 6/4/12 1:28 PM


I swear...Tiggy read my post of @ 6/4/12 9:58 AM and plagiarised my phrase, "we've reached the business end of the tournament"!

http://tennisworld.typepad.com/thewrap/

"As we make the turn into the second week and get the quarterfinals set, we?ve reached what people like to call the ?business end of the tournament.?

Who can you trust these days??

rafaisthebest , 6/4/12 1:34 PM


..............might be a good idea for me to put the word "joke" after some of my, shall we say, acerbic comments, to be sure there are no "lost in translation" moments........................just thinkin'

rafaisthebest , 6/4/12 1:42 PM


Tsonga to face Djokovic in the Qf's

atul1985 , 6/4/12 1:48 PM


Sorry to add yet another comment on Rafa on this Nole Seppi thread, but this is where the discussion has gone.

If Rafa had less intensity or focus or what have you in a portion of his straight set victory against someone playing very well on Saturday, what does that mean? Nothing. There is conserving energy by wrapping up matches faster and running less. But Rafa's conditioning, especially on his stronger years, is superb and running an extra half hour and getting two days rest makes no difference, imho. Especially as there is also the energy of intense focus and reaching very deep when you have to. I think that the players who are far stronger than their opponents have the option to not dig too deep and not spend too much emotional / mental energy in most early round matches and raise it only if needed. And start digging deeper when they really do have to, in the last rounds.

That is perhaps also the main thing to take away from Nole's match yesterday. On paper Seppi was not going to take more than a set, if that. Nole had a bit of an off day but also might not have expected Seppi to be so solid (despite UEs) through the first set, even after going down 0-3, and in the second set. Throw in the weather conditions. Means nothing re how well Novak will play the rest of this week. Novak's chances should he meet Rafa have to do with lots of other factors, but not with how he playes in earlier rounds, imho.

chlorostoma , 6/4/12 1:51 PM


Novak is a lot of a momentum player and if he is not doing well he becomes less confident...can't think that being bullied by an average play of Seppi who himself committed 81 UEs could mean a confidence boost to anyone...Azarenka for instance "suffered" in her first round match and managed to pull out a victory...they were all saying how it would make her stronger but there she is soon lost to Cibulkova and was sent packing...Nole will definitely have to analyze his game against Seppi, he must be thinking about those 77 UEs...and those where not forced errors...half of those USs committed against Tsonga or Fed will mean only one thing...

natashao , 6/4/12 2:15 PM


I have to say that things dont look good for Nole..............its a miracle that he won this match. Those of you who are saying that the outocme was never in doubt are simply lying!! It was in doubt for the first 2 sets and a half!!!Like someone said earlier, had Seppi held his nerve, Nole would have been toast........................period!!!!!

The worrisome issue with Nole right now is the UEs....................he had quite a number with Rafa in Rome and he has had quite a number here at RG!! You see they show up esp when he is under pressure. Now meet Tsonga....................playing in front of his roccus home crowd, the serve and the groundies..........if Novak make as many unforced errors like he has, it will be another tough day at the office for him.......................the match can go to 5 again, and if he does win and meets Fed, then this match can likey go to 5 AGAIN!.....................and then if he wins and is to meet Rafa........................another likely five setter!!.............im just saying.......................

Monalysa , 6/4/12 2:42 PM


A lot of people here seriously forget how mentally strong Nole is. He won't let his confidence go down because of one match, especially since he was playing well before.

And that goes for Nadal and Federer as well. Do you think they would have won as much GS as they did if after every tough match they collapsed (mentally)? Nadal last year against Isner for example, that's one of the reasons why he won so much. Because he was able to put it behind him and focus on his next task. And Nole has proved that he could do the same.

In conclusion, Djokovic's chances of winning here are the same as they were before yesterday, there is nothing to be concerned about. Yesterday was just a bad day, it happens to every athlete and sports team. When poor play becomes a pattern, then there is reason for concern. There isn't one...at least right now.

nemanja230690 , 6/4/12 2:44 PM


@ nemanja230690

You are right in the main, but the UEs HAVE become a pattern IMO!! Like Rafa, his first serve % are a bit worrying, bcos it has beconme a pattern!! Both he and Nole have managed to win due to grit and determination, but it is this very PATTERN that makes them vulnerable against some unexpected inspired opponent!! Dont be so naive!!!!

Monalysa , 6/4/12 3:04 PM


I agree about the serving part. Djokovic needs to improve his serve, it's really letting him down. As for UE, yesterday we've seen him not move well, he slipped a lot, that may have been the cause. Why was he slipping, I have no clue. Might have been his shoes, court, wind....
Also, I feel (and this is just my opinion) that Nole is not focused as much lately, even before RG. And that may have been one od the reasons for UE. Before, every big point he was playing awesome tennis, now it seems like he lacks motivation because he knows he'll get another chance. Take yesterday for example: converted only 9/22 BP, and many were on Seppi's second serve that Djokovic hit into the net or out. And he let Seppi break him 6 times on 9 break points. Can't remember the last time when he saved only 33% of BP.

And that's the only thing I'm concerned about Nole.

nemanja230690 , 6/4/12 3:23 PM


Monalysa, 6/4/12 2:42 PM

Hahaha!!! I like this, "Those of you who are saying that the outocme was never in doubt are simply lying!!"

But honestly, for my part it's true. I was very relaxed all through out, I never, ever thought Nole would lose that match. I even took a siesta during the match because I knew Nole would win it. Of course I expected him to win in straight sets initially and when he lost the first 2 sets I was still calm. Why? Here's why:

1. Seppi did not show me what I call, a killer shot with which he could do damage;
2. He won the first 2 sets beacuse he made less errors than Nole, hardly a ringing endorsement of prowess is it?
3. There was no way Seppi would remain calm after taking those 2 sets, nerves would take over at the thought of beating the #1;
4. The same time Seppi's nerves would be taking over, Nole would deaden his to ice, that's what differentiates the top 3 from the rest.

And so it came to pass......................

rafaisthebest , 6/4/12 3:40 PM


@ RIBT..........

I think we all say that NOW as we all now know the outcome! I felt the same way too, I thought to myself, there is NO way Nole is losing that match, but when i saw the way he was playing, I really thougt he would lose. He was on the brink!! Even his parents thought so too............they left the players box!!!

Its like Fed being up two sets to love with Tsonga at Wimby last year...................who would have thought Fed would lose................guess what..........he DID!!! You just cant really tell!!

Monalysa , 6/4/12 3:53 PM


^^ Just out of interest, did your PC digest well, given that both Fed and Nole won? :D

samprallica , 6/4/12 4:09 PM


Okay, okay good comparison with Tsonga/Fed at Wimby but that just proves my point: Tsonga HAS weapons that can hurt any player ( his serve if it is clicking, his forehand), Seppi just doesn't have any. You almost sensed that Nole knew this and this is why he did not panic, he knew that he could break Seppi. If it had been Isner, or Tsonga then you would have seen some urgency in Nole because those guys have weapons that can hurt and would be difficult to break.

Compafre it to Rafa/Isner last year.............Rafa was on the brink, he had absolutely no margin for error because of the potent weapon Isner has. I never felt Nole was on the brink yesterday................

Another example, Falla at Wimbers 2012, Fall DID outplay Fed for not 2 but 3 sets but choked at the end. Now that was a match where I was almost certain Fed would go out.............

The point is, taking 2 sets off the top 3 guys is not the same as taking 3, hell of a different proposition. That is why it sends seismic shockwaves when it happens.

By the way I am not including Muzza in the top bracket right now beacuse he clearly has health issues to sort out and is simply not as competitive right now. But when he's healthy, he's in the bracket without a doubt.

rafaisthebest , 6/4/12 4:09 PM


.........another weapon the top 3 share which makes a difference: mental toughness. Nole has learnt to channel his emotions into productive use during a match, old soft Nole would have collapsed after going down 2 sets.

This is why I have a hard time seeing Tsonga beating Nole.............all things being equal, Tsonga has not convinced me that he can become an iceman when the chips are down...............

rafaisthebest , 6/4/12 4:23 PM


I don't think Rafa was on the brink of losing to Isner last year, because Rafa won the 1st set 6:4. At no time was he two sets and a break down. Rafa was in control of the match until the middle of the 2nd set and I remember thinking that I was worrying for nothing because Rafa would take it in 3 then Isner broke him and Rafa ended up losing 2 tiebreak sets, but Rafa came back and dominated the 4th set 6:2, breaking Isner twice and took the 5th set 6:4.

Djokovic was behind in the match from 3:0 up in the first set until he took the 3rd set and didn't actually take control until the 5th set.

nadline , 6/4/12 4:27 PM


^^^^Clearly my emotional investment was more in the Rafa/Isner match than the Nole/Seppi match because I was frazzled during the former and quite calm during the latter! I guess that's what affected my conclusions..................

rafaisthebest , 6/4/12 4:33 PM


Well, I guess Im a lot more diffident that you guys, but for a while I really thought Nole was toast!!!

@ samprallica..................lol!!..........nope...............I couldnt get past the "Ctrl" key!!!

Monalysa , 6/4/12 4:41 PM


If anyone can trouble Nole when he is not playing well it's Tsonga...one may think that going to five sets with Seppi would make Nole stronger but certainly not Tsonga...he just said on his on-court interview that he thinks he has got chances against Novak tomorrow...if Nole won his match in three easy sets you would hear a different story from Tsonga, something like: "Nole is playing the best tennis at the moment, I will try my best", etc...but no, Nole just boosted Tsonga's confidence...

natashao , 6/4/12 4:44 PM


Tsonga's infuriating though. He had Stan on toast and then let him completely back into the match by playing wild, impatient, blasting shots that inevitably were going out.
We all know what will happen if he plays like that against Nole.

deuce , 6/4/12 4:51 PM


If Tsonga thinks he's getting the same Djokovic as Seppi, he's going out real quick tomorrow. Regardless, though, he's got a good record against Djokovic (5-5), though he did lose three straight, so he has more reason to feel confident for tomorrow.

nemanja230690 , 6/4/12 4:58 PM


^^^That's why I hesitate to put my money on Tsonga. He has the weapons to hurt Nole but guaranteed, he will have Nole on the mat and then Tsonga will start show-boating...............

rafaisthebest , 6/4/12 4:59 PM


Monalysa,
this is referring to your first post here - it's obvious that the very first poster on this thread is NOT a Nole fan. That post is written with so much cynicism that I fail to understand how it can be missed. Please, read it again. Specially that part "sureee".

As for the match itself, in the end, I was sorry for Seppi. I like the guy and this was his big chance. I am happy Nole won but I wouldn't mind if it was Seppi too.

danica , 6/4/12 5:15 PM



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