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- 2013 US Open – Men's Singles
- US Open men's final Rafael Nadal v Novak Djokovic, live - Telegraph
Both players are agitated - Del Potro is saying there's water leaking from the roof; Djokovic is obsessing over one of the balls that he feels is dead. D el Potro's defence is such an underrated part of his game, and he scuttles around the court to keep the point alive until Djokovic eventually nails him with a smash for Djokovic, his eyes almost bulging out of their sockets, tells the crowd to make some noise.
Del Potro responds on the next point with a pile-driver of a 97mph forehand winner, and then forces a break point with a sensational backhand winner up the line! The crowd screams their approval. Del Potro then can't believe it as he nets a very makeable backhand. What a chance missed. Djokovic then gets away with exceeding the 25 seconds allowed between points, but please no let's not have another refereeing controversy.
And Del Potro then forces another break point as he stands his ground on a Djokovic forehand and thwacks away a forehand winner crosscourt. How on earth did he make that? But again Del Potro is just a little impatient on the break point and is suckered in to blaring a forehand long.
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Djokovic then double faults when up game point as he desperately tries to close out this game. He then sprays a backhand long when up game point again moments later. Will this game ever end? It's into its 15th minute. Not just yet it won't - Del Potro absolutely unleashes an inside-in forehand that even Djokovic can't retrieve. Meryl Streep - one of many famous faces in the crowd tonight - reflects the general mood by clasping her cheeks in wonderment. Djokovic saves it with a gutsy forehand volley. Djokovic finally holds on as Del Potro us hustled into a couple of errors. That game lasted almost 20 minutes!
The umpire is having to ask for calm pretty much every point, with some members of the crowd even cheering Djokovic's service faults. O h the crowd are into this now. Chants of "Delpo" are ringing around the arena, and Djokovic is not enjoying it one bit - imploring the umpire to tell them to simmer down. She tries but the atmosphere is electric, especially after Del Potro bangs down an ace to wrap up a love hold. Del Potro rifles two monster forehands for and lets out his first guttural roar of the night.
He then bullets a third forehand up the line to earn his first break point of the match at Djokovic is not enjoying the partisan Del Potro support, and tells the crowd to be quiet. His mood worsens considerably after the next two points as he makes consecutive forehand errors to hand Del Potro the break!
We're back on serve in the second set. How significant a momentum change will this prove to be? D elpo is having to play so well just to win points. Thankfully for him he does just that this game, thundering away booming shot after booming shot to eke out a critical hold to Djokovic looks like a marathon runner who's got past the pacing himself stage and is now sprinting towards the finishing line.
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O h my, even in his halcyon period Djokovic was rarely this good. He moves to with a beautifully guided forehand half-volley to end a perfectly constructed point. Del Potro then chucks in a couple of errors, and Djokovic holds to D jokovic is toying with Del Potro now, luring him to the net and then snaring him with a clever lob for Moments later it's break point once again, as Del Potro is forced to overcook a forehand to make it This time there's no mistake from Djokovic as a superb return forced Del Potro to miscue a forehand miles long.
D jokovic is swaggering at the moment.
2013 US Open – Men's Singles
He's so confident that he's routinely hitting to the Del Potro forehand, trusting that he will ultimately draw an error from his opponent. A guided backhand pass up the line seals a breezy hold to The bad news is that Djokovic has won out of grand-slam matches when he's won the first set. And the way Djokovic is playing at the moment, this final could get away from Del Potro. He's in one of those moods when it looks impossible to get the ball past him. His anticipation is just spectacular, and it helps him to as he bends down for a backhand volley winner and then nails a forehand winner up the line.
Delpo cranks up the power to reel off the next three points for , but Djokovic forces deuce with a forehand winner and then rips a backhand passing shot up the line to earn himself a break point. Djokovic wastes it with an errant backhand, and is then powerless moments later as Del Potro saves a second break point with a thudding forehand up the line.
Del Potro eventually holds when Djokovic pulls a backhand wide. A stinging serve out wide draws a missed Del Potro forehand, and it's set point Djokovic at And he takes it! Del Potro nets a forehand, and that is the first set for Djokovic. D el Potro is serving extremely smart so far, mixing up his speeds and placement perfectly. An ace out wide helps him to en route to what looks like a simple service game. But wait just a moment, Djokovic showcases some of his world-class defence to battle back to deuce, and then draws a forehand error to earn the first break point of the match up advantage.
After an epic exchange, Del Potro nets a forehand.
US Open men's final Rafael Nadal v Novak Djokovic, live - Telegraph
V ery authoritative game from Novak. A couple of excellent drive volleys help him to a love hold, and the pressure swings instantly back onto his opponent's shoulders. D elpo has a good look at a forehand at , but he skews it wide with Djokovic looking vulnerable at the net. Solid serving on the next two points ease Djokovic to a hold to Make no mistake, both men have come to play tonight.
E xcellent level from both players early on, as Delpo claims a breezy hold to 15 with a first backhand winner. It's back to though as Del Potro nets backhands in consecutive points. Djokovic forces a game point at with a strong serve-forehand volley winner combo, but Delpo forces deuce with a blistering inside out forehand winner of his own.
Djokovic then roars with defiance after nailing a forehand winner to move up advantage. A missed Delpo return seals the hold. S trong serving from Del Potro helps him to , before a stinging inside-in forehand wraps up a love hold. No sign of nerves from either man early on. A fter netting a forehand to lose the first point, Djokovic reels off the next three to move to - helped by a steady backhand volley. The first really lengthy of the match then ensues - ending with a wide Delpo backhand - and Djokovic holds to Break point once more - this is unbelievable - but he's gone long there with Nadal on the back foot.
Rafa throws everything at Djokovic and finally gets some joy, unbalancing the Serb as his firehand catches the baseline before catching him out with a drop shot, and holding when Djokovic goes long mid-rally again. Big hold in the context of Nadal's match - his first hold in four, stopping Novak's four-game streak in the process. Swing that fist, Rafa. One break in six matches, now three breaks on the bounce? Djokovic is certainly playing the better tennis right now, but that owes as much to his newfound confidence as it does to Nadal's more passive last half-hour.
He responds - the grunts get a little louder, the screech of his footwork a little more prominent - and it's deuce.
But another lengthy exchange goes Djokovic's way, and he consolidates the break with an ace. Djokovic gets out the step-ladders, climbs into the loft and plucks one out of the top drawer, an inside-out forehand return that floors Nadal for A missed forehand later and the Spaniard is facing three break points - Novak needs just one, stepping in and rushing the net as Nadal can only slice the ball short and wide into the tramlines. For the first time since the third game of the match - and for the first time in any meaningful way - Djokovic is in front.
Fine choice for this time of night, sir. Novak skews a tight forehand wide and it's , but he's battles on, reaching set point when Rafa fails to steer a huge smash just long. What a set this has been, 58 minutes of ebb and flow, gruelling exchanges and the odd stroke of genius or six. Novak takes the second set. Expressionless, half a beat too slow, he's down before another flash of what he's capable of, with a forehand winner that flashes across Nadal into the ad court. In spite of his travails out there, as much with himself as with Nadal, he's finding a way in this set.
Screaming to the heavens. The game is through seven minutes, and Nadal suddenly finds himself on the receiving end of some bold plays from the Serb. These servicve games aren't getting easier, that's for sure - and once more Djokovic reaches break point by pinning Nadal back with that prodigal down-the-line backhand, and we're into another cat-and-mouse epic, only it's Djokovic attack Nadal's backhand.
Rafa opts for a drop shot but it's the wrong play, and Djokovic snaffles it with a flourish. He's broken again , and will serve for the set. He hasn't, and he double-faults, and he's missed one, and with a punchy 'vamos' Nadal awaits the first of three break points at Djokovic is playing his best to stay in touch right now, cutting off an exocet of a forehand from Nadal on the run with another stop-volley and saving the second as Nadal nets, but it's that forehand again, driven inside-out with too much venom for the Serb.
Rafa breaks , the crowd goes wild once more, and we're back on serve. Rafa snuffs out the danger with a service winner to make it , but Djokovic ghosts into the net after another lengthy display to drop another volley winner, almost making an asset of his shaky backhand as Rafa never suspected the move. Both have their chances - Nadal relentlessly plugging away at Djokovic's backhand as Novak keeps hitting to length - but after 54 fifty-four!
Novak, punching the air in delight, breaks Rafa. The crowd chant "Nole! But even that might not be enough - Nadal leans back and crunches a forehand winner off the back foot for The next lands just long, however, and Djokovic seals it with a sliding ace out wide. Worth remembering how each reached the final - Djokovic with a five-set fightback against Stanislas Wawrinka, Nadal with a straight-sets romp over Richard Gasquet. His legs certainly look the fresher, skipping around his backhand wing to unleash that cartoon-like topspin forehand. Djokovic mutters something in Serbian.
Gary Naylor emails with his take on what might be passing through the mind of Novak Djokovic right now To be fair, Toni Nadal looked like he wanted to do a little more than have a quiet word in his ear. Nadal is motoring once more - he's back at the entirely non-scientifically determined better end of the court - and looks to have Djokovic kippered at , only to see his searing backhand pass skid wide of the line.
Djokovic capitalises on his reprieve with the first signs of some belief from the baseline, moving up with a deft stop-volley before sealing a comfortable hold. He has Nadal reeling at off the back of two sharp returns, but with the door ajar he is too conservative to let Nadal off the hook. But Djokovic zones in on another serve and capitalises on his control of the point to bring up two break points - as Rafa takes objection to some heckling from the crowd.
Nadal survives the first as Djokovic steers a backhand wide, and the second with a fantastic backhand pass with Djokovic forced to come in. Again the fool in the cheap seats screamed 'yeah' as Nadal winds up for his drive - that's four or five times in this game alone. It seems to have rattled Djokovic as much as Nadal as he reels at another missed backhand down the line. A couple of deuces and Novak unleashes a wild return to let Nadal off the hook.
He's so focused on staying with Nadal he hasn't found time to paint the lines yet A forehand winner edges him towards his first game in four and he seals it with a thumping backhand down the line, firing himself up as he heads back to the chair. The world No 1 has reinvented himself over the years from a unique talent to an unstoppable force in his own right, but he needs something special right now to derail Nadal.
It's little respite however, as Nadal is dictating play with that forehand doing serious damage into Djokovic's backhand - for so long the Serb's mainstay. Another drive pushed long and Nadal pumps his fist. The Spaniard takes the first set and is in total control. This time Djokovic tries coming to the net to find a way past the Spaniard, but Nadal shovels back a volley and a smash before running down a dropper. Same place, same result, and Djokovic can do nothing. In a flash it's and Djokovic is on the verge of a two-break deficit.
He looks to have halted Nadal's seven-point charge, but Hawk-Eye says otherwise and Nadal will serve for the set. He's irresistible right now. Up , he hares down after a drop-shot from Djokovic and almost gives him the eyes with a nonchalant cross-court backhand winner. The Spaniard's first regulation hold of the match. Solid response from the Serb, who holds to 15 with an ace down the T and a service winner out wide.
Nice touch from Sky - comparing Nadal's strike point against Djokovic from with his win in Montreal in , showing how moving further up the court puts him on the front foot, or the other way around. Chicken or egg, the results speak for themselves: I've also got a sneaking suspicion that Nadal is down at the trickier end of the court right now in terms of the wind - the same end that drove Serena Williams to blow a gasket against Azarenka as the second set slipped away in yesterday's women's final.
Djokovic works himself up but Nadal looks to have done enough to see off the danger when he reaches with more sterling defence, but he can't keep a slice from deep in his forehand wing in court and it's deuce. That Nadal forehand is purring now, though. He pins Djokovic back in the ad court before going down the line - the Serb is back with the line judges trying to keep the point alive, to no avail.
Even the luck is going against the Serb - a net cord loops the ball just wide, and Nadal has consolidated the break. I guess you learn a thing or two when you've played one another 36 times before. Djokovic is flitting across the baseline like a tightrope walker, refusing to take a step back whenever possible and rushes the net to dispatch a floated Nadal backhand. At , Djokovic sends another of those down-the-line backhands long, and it's the first break point of the match - saved as he weathers some fearsome hitting into the forehand corner from Nadal before he fluffs a regulation backhand into the net.
Nadal's forehand is clicking now though, and another forehand winner, this time cross-court, holds Djokovic to deuce. The world No 1 nets an angled forehand from out wide and it's a second break point for Nadal - and he has this one after Djokovic frames a sitter into mid-court to be dispatched with aplomb. First blood to the Spaniard. The Serbian steps in and tests a down-the-line backhand - his signature kill shot - but sends it long.
He's hitting to a good length already, Novak but Rafa is hanging in for the error. Nadal never faced a break point, although that was more a reflection of his talent once the ball was in play than any particularly dominant serving. Anderson came in having won of service games across six matches, but Nadal accumulated break points at will from the get-go — two in a six-deuce game at 1-all, another two in a five-deuce game at 2-all.
Anderson began trying to end points quickly with a volley. Two problems with that: Anderson is not usually a serve-and-volleyer and so is no expert at that tactic; Nadal is superb at summoning passing shots at extreme speeds and angles, especially when facing the sort of target provided by the 6-foot-8 2. It was only a matter of time until Nadal capitalized on a chance. That only made the score , but the statistics were telling: Anderson had 21 unforced errors, Nadal just four. A pattern had been established. When Nadal broke to lead in the second set , that was pretty much that.
Rafael Nadal captures first title at U. Open since Rafael Nadal, of Spain, holds up the championship trophy after beating Kevin Anderson, of South Africa, in the men's singles final of the U. Associated Press September 10, , 6: Rafael Nadal to face Kevin Anderson in U. When submitting content, please abide by our submission guidelines , and avoid posting profanity, personal attacks or harassment. Should you violate our submissions guidelines, we reserve the right to remove your comments and block your account.