Match report

Nikolay Davydenko ©
2nd round
5/9/12 1 2 Tot
ru  Nikolay Davydenko 2 2 0
es  Rafael Nadal 6 6 2
Rafael Nadal ©
  • Nadal sweeps aside Davydenko in Madrid

    5/9/12 5:00 PM | Cheryl Murray
    Rafael Nadal put on a clay-court spectacle against Nikolay Davydenko, posting his first win in five tries over the Russian.

    It was all business for Rafael Nadal on Wednesday, with the Spaniard putting on a clay-court clinic for his fans at the Mutua Madrid Open for a 6-2, 6-2 victory over Nikolay Davydenko.

    Unlike Novak Djokovic and some of the other players earlier in the week, Nadal seemed to handle the slippery court surface well. The world No. 2 played with controlled aggression and managed to play a winning combination of defense and opportunistic offense for the easy win.

    Davydenko wasn’t in particularly good form. The Russian donated far too many errors to the Nadal cause, compounding his troubles in the match.

    Nadal had points in the opening set to serve up a 6-1 breadstick to the Russian, but Davydenko held on to make Nadal serve out the set.

    The No. 2 seed continued to bully Davydenko around in the second set, even showing some delicate touch at the net on the few occasions that he was lured in.

    Nadal did not face a single break point in the match, while converting four of nine against his opponent. He awaits countryman Fernando Verdasco or Alejandro Falla from Colombia in the third round.

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Nando it's going to be, he beat Falla in 3 sets.

Master class indeed. Hope Rafa continues to shine right up to the end.

Vamos Rafa!

nadline , 5/9/12 5:52 PM

Too right!!! My boy is looking grand!!!!


Monalysa , 5/9/12 5:57 PM

Uncle Toni's a genius. Remember Rafa saying in his book that Uncle Toni made him train on bad courts with bad bounces..................he was was preparing him for the blue clay court!!!

rafaisthebest , 5/9/12 6:23 PM

Guys, there are only 2 active players with a positive H2H against Rafa:

Davydenko 6-5; and Florian Mayer 1-0

I have this nagging feeling that very soon there will be none...........


rafaisthebest , 5/9/12 6:29 PM

Well done Rafa, playing so well even on this slippery court and playing so aggressively. Serving well too, good job. More of such excellent plays to come please, vamos!

luckystar , 5/9/12 6:32 PM

interesting stat

RickyDimon , 5/9/12 7:13 PM

how about federer, how many with positive H2H against him?

phoenix , 5/9/12 7:19 PM

I knew there was just about no-one with a positive H2H with Rafa outside Davy and players who have played him only 1, 2 or 3 times... but didn't realise the list was that short. I remember how Rafa gradually turned around a couple of the other negative H2H ones, esp once he became strong on hard courts.

What about players who have played more than 2 or 3 times against Rafa and have retired since? Do you happen to know who those stats?

chlorostoma , 5/9/12 7:21 PM

talking purely about stats and including retired players too, alex corretja (2-0) and dominik hrbaty (3-1) have winning records against rafa but obv rafa was a teen back then.. other names include chris guccione (won by retirement in sydney) , pim pim johansson , paradorn schrichapan , and rafa also lost a match to olivier mutis on CLAY in rome in 2004 i guess..haha

vamosrafa , 5/9/12 7:57 PM

There is a list of Rafa's H2H on Vamosbrigade.

nadline , 5/9/12 8:03 PM

@phoenix, federer has had a long career..he has a losinng record against more than 20 players, 21 I guess ..thats a pretty long list ! among active players, its rafa and andy murray !

vamosrafa , 5/9/12 8:28 PM

Tignor's take on Rafa's strategy today:

"Rafa brought his green-grass game to the blue clay, and it worked"

Basically Rafa and Uncle T figured that the blue clay plays like grass, only more slippery, hence the tactics.............and the request for grass court shoes.


rafaisthebest , 5/9/12 8:37 PM

yeah and we have people like chr18 who think rafa is all about muscles and strength and stamina LOL. rafa's a genius, the best tactical thinker out there...adjusts so much

vamosrafa , 5/9/12 8:39 PM

That Tignor and his BIG Rafa's secret is out!!!!!!!!

Monalysa , 5/9/12 8:41 PM

^^^Never mind Monalysa. Most players play the same no matter which surface it is so the information will not be of any use to them.

nadline , 5/9/12 8:44 PM

vamosrafa, 5/9/12 8:28 PM

The point I was making is that Rafa has a very good chance of overturning the negative H2H against both Davy and Mayer, hell will first freeze over first before Fed overturns his against Rafa............

When Rafa does, which he will do soon, he will be the only active player with a positive H2H against his opponents. I cannot think of any player who would be in a position to claim or non-active.

rafaisthebest , 5/9/12 8:48 PM

@RITB, i fully understood what your point was and I have been hoping for the same since ling, it was cilic after he beat rafa in 2009...rafa finally got him 2 times after that , now its florian mayer ! haha...davy has always been there...just one more win against both !

I just answered chloro's question when i gave those details

vamosrafa , 5/9/12 8:51 PM

chlorostoma, 5/9/12 7:21 PM

Only 6 players have a winning H2H against Rafa, 4 are retired and 2 active and they are:

Davydenko 6-5
Hrbaty 3-1
Corretja 2-0
Johansson 1-0
Shrichaphan 1-0
Mayer 1-0

Remember, Rafa was only 16 when he lost to Shrichaphan and Corretja, 17 when he lost the last one to Hrbaty and 19 when he lost to Johansson. No shame there.

Compare this to the GOAT...........

Fed has a losing record against 21 players. Let's not even talk about the other active players...........

Muzza is right, Rafa IS special..................

rafaisthebest , 5/9/12 9:02 PM

@RITB, add olivier mutis and chris guccione in this list :)

vamosrafa , 5/9/12 9:15 PM

^^^^I'm sorry, what are their stats against Rafa, vamosrafa?

rafaisthebest , 5/9/12 9:23 PM

olivier mutis beat rafa in their only meeting in rome 2004, guccione beat rafa by retirement in a meeting in sydney 2007 ( won set 1 7-6)

vamosrafa , 5/9/12 9:32 PM

Thanks, that makes it 8.................6 inactive and 2 active...........still eye-popping stats for Rafa..........

rafaisthebest , 5/9/12 9:54 PM

Most interesting are the stats of players that played at least 3 times against Rafa or Fed etc. (less than that cannot mean as much... and sometimes even those few matches may have happened when the player just came to the ATP scene)

In that case we have only 2 with a positive H2H against Rafa:
Davydenko 6-5 and counting
Hrbaty 3-1 not devastating, and it happened early in Rafa's ATP career

What about Fed and players he played at least 3 times? (Granted, Fed is getting older and there will be a time when Rafa will lose more often too. On the other hand Fed was getting into his prime in 2004 in Miami...)

chlorostoma , 5/9/12 10:17 PM

Current ATP-rankings

1. Djokovic 12 500 pts
2. Murray 8 750 pts
3. Federer 8 670 pts
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