Saturday, 9 June 2018

Nadal d del Potro - going for #11

Rafa Nadal (1) and Juan Martin del Potro (5) were the combatants in the second of the 2018 Roland Garros men’s semi finals.

The first four games were shared, and the only break points created were del Potro’s, three, all of which were saved.

Rafa served the fifth game and lost the opening two points - he played two drop shots which enabled him to win the game and lead 3-2.

At 4-4 and deuce Nadal hit a glorious backhand winner and he went on to hold for 5-4.

A backhand pass from Nadal and 0-30.  A winning forehand gave Nadal his first break points of the match, and they were two set points.

One was saved but not the next and Nadal had the set 6-4.

del Potro had wasted six break points during the set, and Nadal just won the key points when it mattered.

Serving in the opening game of set two, Nadal was taken to deuce but ultimately won the game 1-0

A love game to break the Argentine serve and the Spaniard led 2-0.

Break point saved by Nadal and he held for 3-0.

del Potro controlled the net for 30-15 but Nadal shot him down with a backhand winner and created a break point.  Saved and then a game point.  A pair of Nadal backhand winners turned it into a service break and 4-0.

2 forehand winners assisted Rafa to 5-0.  

A terrific overhead from Nadal presented him with two set points.  Both saved and del Potro won the game to at least be on the scoreboard.

Nadal served out the set and led 6-4 6-1.

del Potro lost his opening serve in set three, and Nadal consolidated the break through to 3-1.

del Potro was down two more break points in the fifth game and Nadal hit a backhand winner cross court to achieve the double break and lead 4-1.

A double fault was the only blemish for Rafa in the sixth game and he was just one game away from another final 5-1.

A love game from del Potro meant that Nadal would have to serve out the 5-2.

Match point came after a forehand from Nadal.

The return was long and Nadal won 6-4 6-1 6-2.

He will attempt to win Roland Garros for an eleventh time -  against Dominic Thiem, the only player to have beaten him on clay this year.

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