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THE OFFICIAL R. NADAL THREAD

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Post by 10IS Fri Dec 23, 2011 12:08 am

In an attempt to strike balance with the seemingly numerous, vocal supporters of other player(s) compared to Nadal, I am starting an Official R. Nadal thread and hope that you will give this thread a healthy longevity by posting your constructive/interesting/funny thoughts. I will post part 2 in the future if it so happens that we are able to get a large number of Nadal fans and other players' fans to participate. For now I would like you to share your thoughts on the following questions:

1. Given that Nadal had a relatively bad year with "ONLY" 1 slam victory and 2 slam finals, what should he do prepare for the next season? Can he tweak his game (forehand, backhand, volley skills etc.) to counter Djokovic?

2. I, personally , do not think that Djoko can go physical with RAFA in 2012 and is prone to injury if he tries to play physical battle with Rafa again in 2012. what do you guys think? Should Rafa just maintain this level of play and it will just be a matter of time before Djoko falls part just like Del Potro did?

3. Where do you see the Nadal Federer legacy headed? To me, the indoor victory that Fed had is of not great significance, since Nadal was not motivated enough and drained after long battles with Djoko. If Roger and Rafa were to play in ANY grand slam in 2012, Rafa would still be the favorite. Has Rafa proven to you that he is the ONLY guy who prevented Federer from falsely being labeled as the GOAT? How many more slams would Nadal need to win to win the GOAT title? on what surface?

Before you post please take time to read the following:

1. Fans of other players are of course welcome to participate.
2. Any individual with a deluded/arrogant/know-it-all mentality need not participate. If you are willing to be humble enough to admit that as a mortal being, you are respectful of others and willing to change your opinion based on factual arguments, this thread welcomes your participation.
3. Light banters are always welcome....too much seriousness invites boredom and nobody likes boredom afterall.

TAKE IT AWAY...... Smile

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Post by amritia3ee Fri Dec 23, 2011 12:10 am

Superb article and great idea thumbsup
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Post by 10IS Fri Dec 23, 2011 12:14 am

Thanks amiritia3ee!

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Post by bogbrush Fri Dec 23, 2011 12:15 am

In answer to (1), there's nothing he can do. That train left the station some time ago.

The question now is whether he can stay in the top 2. I see Murray pushing him aside in 2012.
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Post by amritia3ee Fri Dec 23, 2011 12:16 am

bogbrush wrote:In answer to (1), there's nothing he can do. That train left the station some time ago.

The question now is whether he can stay in the top 2. I see Murray pushing him aside in 2012.
I disagree thumbsup
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Post by laverfan Fri Dec 23, 2011 12:17 am

10IS wrote:Should Rafa just maintain this level of play and it will just be a matter of time before Djoko falls part just like Del Potro did?

Are you making an assumption that Nadal can maintain his, say, 2010 or 2011 level? Erm

Del Potro had wrist injuries and wrist surgery and was out for several months. Have you forgotten the DC final in Seville?

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Post by 10IS Fri Dec 23, 2011 12:22 am

bogbrush wrote:In answer to (1), there's nothing he can do. That train left the station some time ago.

The question now is whether he can stay in the top 2. I see Murray pushing him aside in 2012.

I agree that Andy Murray may finally live up to his potential in 2012. But Rafa is too much of a fighter to just fade away. If Djoko's level drops a nit, RAFA will be waiting to pounce. But I wish Andy good luck? I have always liked him.

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Post by bogbrush Fri Dec 23, 2011 12:23 am

The idea of Nadal turing this around on Djokovic is based on the misconception that 2011 was news; Nole has been serving notice for close to two years now.
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Post by 10IS Fri Dec 23, 2011 12:26 am

laverfan wrote:
10IS wrote:Should Rafa just maintain this level of play and it will just be a matter of time before Djoko falls part just like Del Potro did?

Are you making an assumption that Nadal can maintain his, say, 2010 or 2011 level? Erm

Del Potro had wrist injuries and wrist surgery and was out for several months. Have you forgotten the DC final in Seville?

Yes LF. Rafa has maintained a very high level of play consistently, hasn't he? Based on his past esp 2010 when everyone was saying RAFA was done, I am hopeful that he can repeat similar achievements in 2012.

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Post by laverfan Fri Dec 23, 2011 3:49 am

10IS wrote:Yes LF. Rafa has maintained a very high level of play consistently, hasn't he? Based on his past esp 2010 when everyone was saying RAFA was done

Nadal had a 'Rafa' slam waiting in 2010, which he sadly missed.

10IS wrote:I am hopeful that he can repeat similar achievements in 2012.

As a fan, perhaps 'Hope' is the operative word. So I 'hope' for his sake, he can win. OK

So, let us look at ATP only (no DC)...

2010 Doha -F AO - QF IW - SF Miami -SF MC - W Barcelona - DNP Madrid - W Rome - W RG - W Queens - QF W - W Canada - SFCincy - QF USO -WBangkok - SFTokyo -WShanghai - R16WTF -F
2011 Doha -SF AO - QF IW - F Miami - F MC - W Barcelona - W Rome -F Madrid -F RG - WQueens - QF W - F Canada - R32 Cincy - QF USO - F Bangkok -DNP Tokyo -F Shanghai -R16 WTF

Which part of the calendar can he play better than he did in 2011? It looks like Djokovic should not repeat 2011, so that Nadal can improve his 2012.

What happens if Djokovic overcomes his injuries (like Nadal overcame his in 2009) plays even better than 2011? Erm

If Nadal feels Djokovic cannot maintain this level forever, than it is equally likely that Nadal cannot maintain his 2011 level either. Logic (brain) vs. Emotion (Heart). Wink

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Post by amritia3ee Fri Dec 23, 2011 3:56 am

Look showing these stats are all well and good but the fact of the matter is:
We don't know what is going to happen. Djokovic could be absolutely terrible, he could go back to his 2010 form or he could stay at his 2011 form (Jan-Aug). Nadal can improve from last year thats for sure.
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Post by 10IS Fri Dec 23, 2011 4:06 am



Which part of the calendar can he play better than he did in 2011? It looks like Djokovic should not repeat 2011, so that Nadal can improve his 2012.

Umm maybe the Wimbledon Final part, and the US open Final Part.

What happens if Djokovic overcomes his injuries (like Nadal overcame his in 2009) plays even better than 2011? Erm

Then he would win, but based on his records so far I am saying he probably wont. No need to get all riled up. Its all a guess work into the future. Nobody knows with certainty! kiss

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Post by JuliusHMarx Fri Dec 23, 2011 8:16 am

Two things concern me about Nadal with respect to 2012.
1. He's been losing regularly to Djoko for 2 years and not been able tactically to come up with anything to prevent that. Should they meet in 2012, the outcome will rest pretty much in Djoko's hands.
2. He's spoken of lacking passion for tennis. How does one go about finding more passion - it's not exactly something you can work on on the training ground. He could be staying away from tennis at the moment, but that will affect his form in the new year and he may even find he likes being away from tennis, which would be even worse. On the other hand, if he's still training/practising, will it feel more and more like a chore and affect his passion for tennis even more?

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Post by hawkeye Fri Dec 23, 2011 8:18 am

bogbrush wrote:In answer to (1), there's nothing he can do. That train left the station some time ago.

The question now is whether he can stay in the top 2. I see Murray pushing him aside in 2012.

Mmm. So Djokovic beat Nadal a few times and the train has left the station? How come the train hasn't left the station for Murray?

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Post by JuliusHMarx Fri Dec 23, 2011 8:25 am

HE, maybe ask that on another thread. Pretty sure this one is about Nadal.

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Post by bogbrush Fri Dec 23, 2011 8:38 am

amritia3ee wrote:Look showing these stats are all well and good but the fact of the matter is:
We don't know what is going to happen. Djokovic could be absolutely terrible, he could go back to his 2010 form or he could stay at his 2011 form (Jan-Aug). Nadal can improve from last year thats for sure.

Nadal played great last year; he had an injury in Australia and ran out of gas after Septemeber (as always) but otherwise it was business as usual.

The problem is that one player in particular has worked out how to play him, completely. And I suspect others are taking notes. They may or may not enjoy the same success at Djokovic has, but this all looks like a lot more pressure for Nadal.
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Post by bogbrush Fri Dec 23, 2011 8:41 am

hawkeye wrote:
bogbrush wrote:In answer to (1), there's nothing he can do. That train left the station some time ago.

The question now is whether he can stay in the top 2. I see Murray pushing him aside in 2012.

Mmm. So Djokovic beat Nadal a few times and the train has left the station? How come the train hasn't left the station for Murray?

"a few"? It's 9 out of 11, and those two were contact lens and post-Federer 5 set epic at USO '10.

Murray has no bearing on that equation.
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Post by hawkeye Fri Dec 23, 2011 8:44 am

To answer the thread questions

1. Nadal shouldn't "tweak" his game to counter Djokovic. His game is fine. He does need to play well when it really matters and when he is under pressure. Something he wasn't able to do against Djokovic this year. IMO it helped Djokovic and hindered Nadal having all those matches played over a short space of time.

The Davis Cup final showed that Nadal can play well under intence pressure so he's not forgotton how to do it.

I'm sure he will be practising a few serves in preparation for next year. Thats something he can definately improve on next year.

2. Ha ha! Don't think Rafa can make Nole "fall apart". (Just like despite what some like to think Nole can't make Rafa fall apart) Saying that he was obviously having problems for the last quarter of 2011. Not sure what difference a few more weeks is going to make. I certainly wouldn't be surprised if he has a dip in form but he's a great player and isn't going anywhere.

3. Nadal and Federer are both great. They will be remembered for that and the great matches they have played. No one will care much about their H2H.

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Post by hawkeye Fri Dec 23, 2011 8:53 am

bogbrush wrote:
hawkeye wrote:
bogbrush wrote:In answer to (1), there's nothing he can do. That train left the station some time ago.

The question now is whether he can stay in the top 2. I see Murray pushing him aside in 2012.

Mmm. So Djokovic beat Nadal a few times and the train has left the station? How come the train hasn't left the station for Murray?

"a few"? It's 9 out of 11, and those two were contact lens and post-Federer 5 set epic at USO '10.

Murray has no bearing on that equation.

Its actually 16-13 to Nadal.

Of course Murray has no bearing on this! It was you that implied that he did.

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Post by 10IS Fri Dec 23, 2011 12:28 pm

bogbrush wrote:
amritia3ee wrote:Look showing these stats are all well and good but the fact of the matter is:
We don't know what is going to happen. Djokovic could be absolutely terrible, he could go back to his 2010 form or he could stay at his 2011 form (Jan-Aug). Nadal can improve from last year thats for sure.

Nadal played great last year; he had an injury in Australia and ran out of gas after Septemeber (as always) but otherwise it was business as usual.

The problem is that one player in particular has worked out how to play him, completely. And I suspect others are taking notes. They may or may not enjoy the same success at Djokovic has, but this all looks like a lot more pressure for Nadal.


I agree to an extent. Would be interesting to see how Djoko does in 2012 because Nadal has been second only to Djoko in 2011. And virtually everyone agrees that Djoko has had arguably the best tennis season in a long time.

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Post by sportslover Fri Dec 23, 2011 12:54 pm

Good article 10IS I hope that with you and amritia3ee joining that this forum will give Rafa Nadal the credit he deserves and gets away from the off-putting bashing that seemingly was the norm here.

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Post by amritia3ee Fri Dec 23, 2011 1:03 pm

sportslover wrote:Good article 10IS I hope that with you and amritia3ee joining that this forum will give Rafa Nadal the credit he deserves and gets away from the off-putting bashing that seemingly was the norm here.
thumbsup Of course
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Post by laverfan Fri Dec 23, 2011 1:41 pm

As some one said... "Hope is the ultimate form of despair".

If HE and Lydian say, there is no need to tweak his game, so be it.

Many big servers are coming on the scene, which cause Nadal problems.

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Post by bogbrush Fri Dec 23, 2011 1:50 pm

hawkeye wrote:

Its actually 16-13 to Nadal.

Of course Murray has no bearing on this! It was you that implied that he did.

Yeah, but that's based on olden days. It's 9-2 in the last 11, and as I say at least one of those matches has a massive asterisk on it (the contact lens) and the USO final saw Djokovic heavily handicapped by the relative semis.

As for Murray, I imply his game is capable of being adapted in the direction of Djokovic's. I can see no way Nadal can do anything to handle Djokovic.
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Post by amritia3ee Fri Dec 23, 2011 1:52 pm

bogbrush wrote: I can see no way Nadal can do anything to handle Djokovic.
That's a pity Sad
Have you told Nadal about this.
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Post by hawkeye Fri Dec 23, 2011 1:59 pm

amritia3ee wrote:
bogbrush wrote: I can see no way Nadal can do anything to handle Djokovic.
That's a pity Sad
Have you told Nadal about this.

Do you think maybe Nadal should retire now or perhaps linger for a couple of years whilst slowly dropping down the rankings?

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Post by amritia3ee Fri Dec 23, 2011 2:01 pm

hawkeye wrote:
amritia3ee wrote:
bogbrush wrote: I can see no way Nadal can do anything to handle Djokovic.
That's a pity Sad
Have you told Nadal about this.

Do you think maybe Nadal should retire now or perhaps linger for a couple of years whilst slowly dropping down the rankings?
Nadal should ask BB and Tenez before taking any rash decision IMHO.
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Post by hawkeye Fri Dec 23, 2011 2:02 pm

amritia3ee wrote:
hawkeye wrote:
amritia3ee wrote:
bogbrush wrote: I can see no way Nadal can do anything to handle Djokovic.
That's a pity Sad
Have you told Nadal about this.

Do you think maybe Nadal should retire now or perhaps linger for a couple of years whilst slowly dropping down the rankings?
Nadal should ask BB and Tenez before taking any rash decision IMHO.

I agree

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Post by bogbrush Fri Dec 23, 2011 2:03 pm

hawkeye wrote:
amritia3ee wrote:
bogbrush wrote: I can see no way Nadal can do anything to handle Djokovic.
That's a pity Sad
Have you told Nadal about this.

Do you think maybe Nadal should retire now or perhaps linger for a couple of years whilst slowly dropping down the rankings?

He should do what he wants. I expect him to compete and battle hard, and gradually fall down the rankings. It's inevitable, and anyone expecting otherwise is deluding themselves.

I see some signs of desperate posters clinging to each other for comfort. That's a pretty sure sign that, in their hearts, they know it to be true.
Relax, accept it, and enjoy what you have left.
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Post by amritia3ee Fri Dec 23, 2011 2:04 pm

bogbrush wrote:
hawkeye wrote:
amritia3ee wrote:
bogbrush wrote: I can see no way Nadal can do anything to handle Djokovic.
That's a pity Sad
Have you told Nadal about this.

Do you think maybe Nadal should retire now or perhaps linger for a couple of years whilst slowly dropping down the rankings?

He should do what he wants. I expect him to compete and battle hard, and gradually fall down the rankings. It's inevitable, and anyone expecting otherwise is deluding themselves.
I think it's inevitable that either:
-Nadal drops down the rankings
-Nadal stays the same
-Nadal goes up in the rankings.
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Post by bogbrush Fri Dec 23, 2011 2:13 pm

amritia3ee wrote:
bogbrush wrote:
hawkeye wrote:
amritia3ee wrote:
bogbrush wrote: I can see no way Nadal can do anything to handle Djokovic.
That's a pity Sad
Have you told Nadal about this.

Do you think maybe Nadal should retire now or perhaps linger for a couple of years whilst slowly dropping down the rankings?

He should do what he wants. I expect him to compete and battle hard, and gradually fall down the rankings. It's inevitable, and anyone expecting otherwise is deluding themselves.
I think it's inevitable that either:
-Nadal drops down the rankings
-Nadal stays the same
-Nadal goes up in the rankings.

Ah bless.

Confidence ebbing by the minute. Laugh
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Post by lydian Fri Dec 23, 2011 3:08 pm

Its getting to be a cyclical discussion now.
I just think Nadal needs to find his mojo again which he clearly lost through 2011 - not that that will mean he wins everything but we might see him looking like he wants to be on a tennis court again.
His basic game is ok, barring the odd minor tweak, his confidence isnt - and tennis is a game of confidence for sure.
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Post by JuliusHMarx Fri Dec 23, 2011 3:12 pm

lydian wrote:Its getting to be a cyclical discussion now.
I just think Nadal needs to find his mojo again which he clearly lost through 2011 - not that that will mean he wins everything but we might see him looking like he wants to be on a tennis court again.
His basic game is ok, barring the odd minor tweak, his confidence isnt - and tennis is a game of confidence for sure.

Which was my point above - how exactly does one find a mojo? Or to put it more seriously, how does one re-discover passion for the game? And what if, like, say Wilander or Borg, he can't?

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Post by amritia3ee Fri Dec 23, 2011 3:17 pm

He was passionate enough against Argentina wasn't he chin
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Post by JuliusHMarx Fri Dec 23, 2011 3:24 pm

I don't know, only Rafa would know and it doesn't really address the problems Rafa says he has, which is what this thread is for.
Soon after that he gave an interview saying he needed to recover his passion for the game for next year, and recover his mental strength.
I can see how a player can work on technique and fitness in the short off-season, but what's the process for recovering passion for the game and mental strength?
Time away from tennis? But that works against maintaining fitness and technique.

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Post by bogbrush Fri Dec 23, 2011 3:26 pm

lydian wrote:Its getting to be a cyclical discussion now.
I just think Nadal needs to find his mojo again which he clearly lost through 2011 - not that that will mean he wins everything but we might see him looking like he wants to be on a tennis court again.
His basic game is ok, barring the odd minor tweak, his confidence isnt - and tennis is a game of confidence for sure.

Well it beats worrying about what you can do about an opponent who is completely immune to your favourite play, and who can outlast you on the court.

amrit criticises Federer fans for referring to the fact that he had Mono in 2008 and believe it impaired him througout that campaign, but the foremost Nadal fan on the forum explains 2011 as being because he lost his mojo and didn't really want to be on court.

Massive, massive disservice to Djokovic. And a hugely flawed analysis. Djokovic has pretty much had the measure of Nadals game for closing on two years now.
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Post by amritia3ee Fri Dec 23, 2011 3:28 pm

His DC win will be v.important on that front IMHO


Last edited by amritia3ee on Fri Dec 23, 2011 3:31 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Post by amritia3ee Fri Dec 23, 2011 3:30 pm

bogbrush wrote:


amrit criticises Federer fans for referring to the fact that he had Mono in 2008 and believe it impaired him througout that campaign, but the foremost Nadal fan on the forum explains 2011 as being because he lost his mojo and didn't really want to be on court.

When on earth did I say that? Laugh
Djokovic has beaten Nadal because he has played superb tennis and has outplayed him.
This does not mean the same will happen next year but for 2011 Djokovic was simply the better player.
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Post by JuliusHMarx Fri Dec 23, 2011 3:40 pm

amritia3ee wrote:His DC win will be v.important on that front IMHO

Except that he gave the interview after the DC win and still sounded downbeat about his form and tennis in general. Motivation is such a nebulous thing - probably even more so than confidence. I hope he reminds himself, or someone reminds him, that - "tennis is fun, at least it's supposed to be". OK, apologies because that's a recent Federer quote, but Rafa so rarely looks like he's having fun on court anymore and I think that if can get that approach back, it will re-invigorate him mentally more than winning, say, the DC. I hope so anyway.

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Post by lydian Fri Dec 23, 2011 3:43 pm

BB, you're jumping to hyperbolic conclusions on my post when I didnt go on further. Nadal himself said he lost passion for tennis during the year? Are we to say this did not have a bearing on his tennis?

The question is why did he lose passion for tennis? Yes I'm sure losing to Nole was a key factor, other things might be ongoing internal tensions with UncleT, his parents ongoing marital situation must have been a distraction knowing how tightly knit the Nadal clan are, losing a little bit of technique on FH (always dropping short in 11), etc, etc.

He does however say his loss of passion comment has been over-inflated.
I agree the DC win will be a big help. Players can go through doldrums and times where they dont look happy on court. Federer had similar issues in 2009 (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v9X48FqmoJI), he came back stronger later in the year and 2010. No reason Nadal cant turn around the current negativity in his game.

Lets see if he can get his mojo back because without it he's going to achieve less and less. Yes, fighting Djokovic is key...he needs to start winning matches against him for sure. Can he do it, we'll have to see wont we. But you're assuming Djokovic can keep the same uber-level in 2012 as he did in 2011...
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Post by bogbrush Fri Dec 23, 2011 4:12 pm

I don't really accept it Lydian; it's highly speculative and unreliable, and frankly pales against a genuine illness or injury.
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Post by Calder106 Fri Dec 23, 2011 4:30 pm

bogbrush wrote:I don't really accept it Lydian; it's highly speculative and unreliable, and frankly pales against a genuine illness or injury.

I still don't it as an excuse. It's statement of fact that he was not as mentally attuned in 2011 as in previous years. He said in other interviews that he felt his level had dropped this year. That to me is admitting he was just not good enough this year and needs to get back to his previous level if he is going to be able to hold his own against Djokovic (or others who may raise their standards).

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Post by bogbrush Fri Dec 23, 2011 5:35 pm

It's an attempt to portray Djokovic 2011 as inferior to Nadal 2010. Not in my book.

I must say that it's a smart tactic as it's absolutely without proof.
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Post by amritia3ee Fri Dec 23, 2011 5:39 pm

bogbrush wrote:It's an attempt to portray Djokovic 2011 as inferior to Nadal 2010.
The new Sherlock Holmes in the making. Yes thats exactly what Lydian, Calder and Julius were trying to say.
Great detective work clap
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Post by Tenez Fri Dec 23, 2011 5:44 pm

Calder106 wrote:I still don't it as an excuse. It's statement of fact that he was not as mentally attuned in 2011 as in previous years.

Or maybe what I have been saying for years that one is only as strong mentally as physically superior. The day Nadal realised his superior physique may not be enough to shake off Nole, his mental strength deserted him. In fact something we could observe already in 2009!

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Post by JuliusHMarx Fri Dec 23, 2011 5:47 pm

Calder106 wrote:
bogbrush wrote:I don't really accept it Lydian; it's highly speculative and unreliable, and frankly pales against a genuine illness or injury.

I still don't it as an excuse. It's statement of fact that he was not as mentally attuned in 2011 as in previous years. He said in other interviews that he felt his level had dropped this year. That to me is admitting he was just not good enough this year and needs to get back to his previous level if he is going to be able to hold his own against Djokovic (or others who may raise their standards).

I took those interviews to mean the latter stages of the year. I don't think he was talking about it until late in the year. I think the defeats at Wimby and USO probably contributed to it a great deal.
Also if he feels he's losing passion for tennis, maybe the motivation to repeat his successes in the future is not as strong as the motivation to achieve those successes in the first place.

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Post by Calder106 Fri Dec 23, 2011 5:52 pm

bogbrush wrote:It's an attempt to portray Djokovic 2011 as inferior to Nadal 2010. Not in my book.

I must say that it's a smart tactic as it's absolutely without proof.

So if asked would Djokovic say that he played worse in 2010 than in 2011. Probably. That wouldn't mean that he thought that Nadal 2010 was inferior to Djokovic 2011. Nadal could have come out with injuriy excuses for 2011. He has basically said he didn't play as well. He has also said as documented on this forum that Djokovic's level has gone up.

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Post by bogbrush Fri Dec 23, 2011 5:52 pm

amritia3ee wrote:
bogbrush wrote:It's an attempt to portray Djokovic 2011 as inferior to Nadal 2010.
The new Sherlock Holmes in the making. Yes thats exactly what Lydian, Calder and Julius were trying to say.
Great detective work clap
Pipe down, the big boys are talking.
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Post by JuliusHMarx Fri Dec 23, 2011 5:56 pm

bogbrush wrote:
amritia3ee wrote:
bogbrush wrote:It's an attempt to portray Djokovic 2011 as inferior to Nadal 2010.
The new Sherlock Holmes in the making. Yes thats exactly what Lydian, Calder and Julius were trying to say.
Great detective work clap
Pipe down, the big boys are talking.

C'mon BB, it's not going to help the forum get back to a decent level if the long-standing members join in that sort of stuff.

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Post by bogbrush Fri Dec 23, 2011 5:59 pm

Hey Julius, check out what I was replying to.

I'm here ready to play nice, but prepared for the other. amrit can't expect nice replies if all he does is look for trouble.

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