Rafael Nadal was once nonetheless 17 when the 2004 season kicked off along with his first ATP ultimate in Adelaide. Rafa was once hungry for extra in Miami following his first Davis Cup victory and the 3rd spherical in Indian Wells. The teenager defeated former Wimbledon champion Goran Ivanisevic in the second one spherical and arrange a gathering with the newly-crowned international no.
1 Roger Federer on March 28. At 17 years, 9 months and 25 days, Nadal scored a sensational 6-3, 6-3 triumph in swift 70 mins. Thus, he was the youngest participant with a win over international no. 1 participant for the reason that formation of the ATP Tour in 1990!
Despite the younger Spaniard’s obvious skill and iron will, no person may just have predicted this end result, no longer in opposition to the participant who conquered the Australian Open, Dubai and Indian Wells! Every week earlier than, Roger claimed the Indian Wells name and had only some days to get better bodily and get ready for Miami.
He felt signs of sickness and fever and not regarded excellent at the courtroom in opposition to Rafa. The Swiss slightly survived a problem from Nikolay Davydenko within the earlier spherical. He had not anything left within the tank for the younger Spaniard, bowing out in instantly units and sending a teen into the ultimate 16.
We must no longer take anything else from Nadal’s triumph, although, as he delivered an outstanding victory after enjoying with out a signal of nerves. Rafa did huge harm along with his topspin forehands that bounced top and took time without work from Federer’s photographs, retaining the opponent out of his convenience zone and drawing many mistakes.
The Spaniard’s protection was once already on a top stage, development a fort across the baseline that was once nearly unimaginable to penetrate, even for a positive attacker like Roger. He didn’t lean best on that, although, attacking every time he may just and enjoying some well-constructed issues on the internet.
Nadal combined the photographs well, stored the rallies on his racquet and not allowed Federer to step in and take price.
Rafael Nadal beat Roger Federer of their first fit in 2004.
Nadal’s serve gave him a substantial benefit within the first come upon in opposition to the Swiss.
He by no means confronted a smash level or deuce in his video games and created room to play extra aggressively at the go back. Also, Rafa served at 81% and received 31 out of 39 issues after touchdown the primary serve in. He produced spectacular numbers for a participant whose preliminary shot was once no longer a chief weapon in his arsenal within the early days.
Nadal’s 2d serve labored like a appeal, too (he needed to play simply 9 issues at the weaker serve, although), dropping 12 issues in 9 carrier video games – one thing he may just have best dreamed about earlier than the beginning of the fit.
On the opposite hand, Roger may just no longer practice the ones numbers in the back of his preliminary shot. The Swiss dropped nearly 40% of the issues, performed in opposition to seven smash possibilities and suffered 3 breaks to propel Rafa over the end line.
Federer had 16 carrier winners, and Nadal returned the opposite serves with out a bother to realize an quick benefit within the rallies and ship the balls again to Roger’s backhand, particularly in the second one set. Nadal completed the come upon with 9 carrier winners and a 14-11 benefit within the winners from the sphere.
He hit with extra selection than his rival, who had best two winners out of doors his forehand. The Swiss sprayed 17 unforced mistakes, 12 from his extra really extensive wing, whilst Nadal stayed on 14, principally because of his backhand. The Spaniard cast essentially the most important distinction within the pressured mistakes section, hitting simply 3 from his backhand, whilst Roger had 16.
Thanks to these carrier winners, Federer had a narrow edge within the shortest issues as much as 4 strokes (31-27), however the whole thing else was once on Nadal’s aspect. The younger gun demolished the opponent within the mid-range rallies from 5 to 8 photographs (20-7) and clinched 11 of the longest 16 issues to earn one of the vital spectacular victories earlier than turning into a Major contender a 12 months later.
“I’m thrilled because I played one of the best matches of my life. Roger did not play his best tennis, which is why I could win. I would have had no chance if he had played his best tennis. If a player like me plays at an excellent level, and a top player like Roger does not, I can beat him.
I played almost perfect tennis today, stepping inside the court and dominating the exchanges to get him out of his comfort zone. I also served exceptionally well, probably like never in my life; that was the key too,” Rafael Nadal mentioned.