Nadal v. The Armada

Discussion in 'Pro Tennis (Mens)' started by Moxie, Jan 18, 2016.

  1. Moxie

    Moxie Multiple Major Winner

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    I don't want to derail the AO match thread, but I would be interested in hearing if @mrzz actually has a defense for claiming that Spanish players "used to fold so heavily" against Rafa, or if @Denis has back-up for his initial claim that Ferrer hasn't always tried hard v. Nadal.  "Folding" (or not trying) is the same as "tanking," which is a sanctionable charge, and especially serious in light of the recent match-fixing allegations against tennis, and so shouldn't be tossed around lightly.  Personally, I think it's just one of the cheesy tropes used to demean Nadal on forums, and the whole of Spanish tennis in with the bathwater.

     
     
  2. Mastoor

    Mastoor Masters Champion

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    It is very strange that of all of them only Verdasco played a good match against Rafa, the 5 setter in 2009.
     
  3. Moxie

    Moxie Multiple Major Winner

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    I'll debate you on that later, which I think is BS, but I think it's clear that the Spaniards don't tank against Nadal.
     
  4. Denis

    Denis Masters Champion

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    I'll try to dig up the matches later, but I remember two matches by Ferrer in particular, one in Madrid and one at the French where Ferrer basically gave up. In Madrid he folded in the third like a Walmart tent.
     
  5. Denis

    Denis Masters Champion

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    I also did a stat once at the other forums comparing the Spanish h2h against Nadal with the rest of the field against Nadal (excl big 4) and it was abysmal.
     
  6. Carol

    Carol Major Winner

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    This is not time to me  to go through silly and nonsense arguments (4:am) but then you and Denis should think the same when the others Serbians play against Novak.....   :bye:
     
  7. Denis

    Denis Masters Champion

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    There are no other Serbians, and if there are, I couldn't care less about them. I'm not a moronic nationalist like you.
     
  8. Carol

    Carol Major Winner

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    Ugh, that was ugly, you shoul lookd in the mirror before to insult

    Let me get out of here before to say something more that you wouldn't like at all
     
  9. Moxie

    Moxie Multiple Major Winner

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    And, obviously, Verdasco read it, and got retribution for all of his fellow Spaniards today, so thanks for that.  We shall address this nonsense tomorrow.  Meantime, why don't you contemplate the Swiss h2h against Nadal, which is also abysmal.  Never mind the Argentine one, etc.  I don't even think the Serb one is so great either, and they have a ringer.
     
  10. Denis

    Denis Masters Champion

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    It was the comparison with the rest of the field that was abismal prompted by Ferrers play against Nadal a couple of years ago. Happy to see you prove otherwise. Not that I care that much about it anymore. Everyone is beating Nadal these days.
     
  11. mrzz

    mrzz Major Winner

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    First, ok, I learned to use the word "fold" (in this sense) in our forums (from the tennis.com days onwards), and it had a different use than  "tank". To my perception, it was used much more in the sense of "giving up", "playing with a losing attitude", and etc. You see people saying "player A tanked that set", and you don't see "player A folded that set". "Tank", I would guess, carries a great bit of intentionality, which "fold", to me at least, does not. It was in this sense that I used the word.

    Having said that.. Moxie, are you out of your mind? Since when I started to make outrageous allegations about player A or B? You use to refer and pay a lot of attention to poster's "styles"... You really should know that this is not "my style".

    So, my point was: the Spanish players "folded" (in that sense) against Nadal. They thought that they did not stand a chance, and you could see it on court. Most matches were simply non competitive. AO 2009 against Verdasco was a huge exception. This is subjective, it is my opinion, I do not need to back it up with evidence. In this case, as it is subjective, "backing it up" does not even make sense.

    Stating an opinion is different to making an accusation (and, as I pointed out, I could not possibly be accusing anyone as I was referring to an unintentional action).

    I could use statistics to prove my point, but for more than one reason I won't. But, @mastoor, I checked the H2H between Djokovic, Troicky and Tipsarevic. We can discuss it in detail if you want (I don't), but they surely support my point. When I mentioned Djokovic and Federer, I was trying to make sure people would not see the post as "partisan", but hell you guys always find a way to do it.

    Today's result, by the way, is not an evidence to the contrary, as I was referring to the past. A distant past, it seems more and more.

     

     
     
  12. EdbergsGhost

    EdbergsGhost Masters Champion

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    :scratch:  Woke up to find Verdasco's submarine torpedoed Nadal's battleship.   :unsure:
     
  13. Mastoor

    Mastoor Masters Champion

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    How? Tipsarevic and Troicki lost all their matches against each Fedal. They also lost all their matches to No1e except 2 that Tipsarevic won. So, if anything, records say opposite to what you originally claimed.

    Also, I didn't see your post as partisan, I just so it as incorrect. Simply Verdasco and Ferrer both had almost equal h2h with Novak at some stage while at the time they were both losing strangely easily against Rafa .

     

     
     
  14. mrzz

    mrzz Major Winner

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    Mastoor, Troicky has one one win over Djokovic, in Umag, just after worl war I. Tipsarevic has two, one in 2011 and one in 2012, but I happened to watch those matches. In 2011 YEC Djokovic was really not interested (after all he had won), and in 2012 either (though I don't recall exactly why). And (this is the important bit) Djokovic won most (or at least a lot) of his matches against them pre-2011. Point is, they do not play particularly well against him (even if I remember  a good five setter in one USO).  Anyway, this was a secondary part of the argument (as for Federer-Wawrinka). The main thing is: they do not excel against their more talented countrymen, the perform their average, at best.

    Your last sentence illustrates my point: that the "armada" performs (or used to perform) bellow their average against Nadal.

    Anyway, I said before that I did not want to go down to statistics, and that's one of the reasons: Djokovic, Federer and Nadal in general have a massive advantage against anyone, so there is no point in comparing an occasional loss here and there, it has no statistical significance, specially considering that we only have one swiss to play against Federer, and two serbs against Djokovic. Fortunately you pointed out one of the few hard evidences (even if debatable) for this "case". But, in the end, it all comes down, as I said, to subjective perceptions. My perception on the matches between Nadal and the spaniards is very clear. About Djokovic against his fellow serbs, you probably saw more matches than I did, and surely remembers they better, so if you say that you're impression is the opposite, I must agree.

     

     

     

     
     
  15. Billie

    Billie Nole fan
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    Krajinovic has a winning record against Nole.  Filip won their only encounter on clay.    Janko beat Nole also.  But those wins are sparse because they are not top players, not because they fold against him.  Troicki played the match of his life at the USO in 2007 and took Nole to 5 sets, so it's not like they are not trying.  And Mastoor is probably right in saying that all Serbian players (excluding Nole) never beat Rafa, Roger and probably Andy.  Do they fold against them as well? :)

    I don't subscribe to the notion that people fold when playing somebody.   I don't think so about Spanish players as well.  Rafa was so much better than all of them so what they could do better, I am not sure.   Even better players than the rest of Spanish armada were beaten by Rafa often enough.
     
  16. Moxie

    Moxie Multiple Major Winner

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    Mrzz, yes, "folding" is a more moderate term that "tanking," as it can imply no ill-intent, but it can imply deliberate choice, as in the way one folds in poker.  Forgive me if you meant nothing more than that Spaniards had a psychological barrier to beating Nadal.  I think you know that others have meant rather more, impugning Spanish players with this long-running gambit that they "fold," if you like, against Nadal.  However, as you mean it mildly, I would debate that it's worth putting it down to their shared nationality, or even seeing all Spaniards in the same way.  Tennis is an individual sport, and match-ups matter, as we know.  Additionally, Nadal, like Federer, dominated the field for a fairly large block of time.  They both carried an aura of invincibility (Rafa in particular on clay) that intimidated not only their fellow countrymen, but others in the field, as well. Look at a few stats:

    Nadal v. Ferrer:  24 -6

    Nadal v. Almagro: 13-1

    Nadal v. Verdasco: 14-3

    Nadal v. F. Lopez: 9-4

    Nadal v. GGLopez: 5-1

    Rafa does have big numbers against Spaniards in the h2h, but since a lot of Spanish players go deep on clay, it makes sense that they've played him a lot, and come up short so often.  Like so many others.  But there are damning h2hs that aren't Spaniards:

    Nadal v. Wawrinka: 14-3

    Nadal v. Gasquet: 14-1

    Nadal v. Berdych: 19-4

    As a comparison with Feliciano Lopez, Rafa's H2h v. Juan Martin del Potro is 8-4.  Similar in part because Feli is better on grass and HCs than clay, and also why they haven't played as much.  But the point is, I wouldn't lump Feliciano with other Spaniards v. Rafa.  And therefore, did he lose because he was Spanish, or because Nadal was better, when he won?  And surely no one looks down their nose at Rafa v. Del Potro, and he's only won one more that Lopez.

    Probably the main one that people are thinking about when they ask about Nadal dominating Spaniards is Ferrer, (and it is a brutal h2h,) but Ferrer has long been considered to be "Rafa-lite."   Same grit, same affinity for the long points, fewer big weapons.  It's not that surprising.  As to Almagro and Verdasco are both older, and have "head" issues. (Verdasco obviously has got some ground on that in the last times they've played.)

    As to the notion that it's similar with the Swiss and Serbs, let's have a look:

    Federer v. Wawrinka:  18-3

    (Nadal v. Wawrinka: 14-3)

    Wawrinka didn't suffer so much a national mental block against Roger as a talent block against the 2 best in front of him.  (By comparison, Federer is also 16-0 v. Ferrer, and neither Almagro nor Verdasco has ever beaten him.)

    Djokovic v. Troicki: 13-1

    Djokovic v. Tipsarevic: 5-2

    Troicki has a rough h2h v. Djokovic, but Tipsy doesn't, really.

    I didn't have to work hard for these h2h comparisons, and I didn't delve that deep.  I'm sure there are others. One more, just to make the point:  Federer v. Roddick:  21-3.

    My point is, I don't think it's about nationalities, when it comes to dominating players.  You may think it adds a psychological aspect, but I don't.  If anything, it might be hard for top players to play their friends/close colleagues.  If lesser players have "folded," or "given up," against the stronger players, I think they've done it individually, and because they lacked the chops, or the mindset, and not because of their nationality.

     

     

     
     
  17. Moxie

    Moxie Multiple Major Winner

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    I sort of have to agree with Mastoor here.  What is the point of trying to compare Djokovic to Tipsarevic and Troicki?  It's a Ferrari v. a Pinto.  They didn't concede to their countrymen so much as fall to a better player.  As you say, it's a subjective point.  Indeed.
     
  18. calitennis127

    calitennis127 Masters Champion

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    Agreed. I think a more plausible explanation would be that he is doing without his EPO now and doesn't have that superhuman never-get-tired-no-matter-how-long-the-rally stamina we once witnessed.
     
  19. Moxie

    Moxie Multiple Major Winner

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    Oh, you're so dreary.  If you think Rafa lost that match because he was tired, you weren't watching.  You'd attribute anything he's ever accomplished to everything other than talent, including cheating.  That dog doesn't hunt.  And neither does the notion that he's not talented.
     
  20. Moxie

    Moxie Multiple Major Winner

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    You are not completely right about Nole's h2h v. Verdasco and Ferrer, vis-a-vis Nadal.  He is 8-4 v. Verdasco and 16-5 v. Ferrer.  They are older and got the better of him, a little bit, early on, but he is also dominating Ferrer, like Federer and Nadal.  And he hasn't really played Verdasco that much, but Fernando's wins were also mostly earlier on.  It's not that Novak was losing to them, and Nadal was "strangely" winning to them.  It's a lot about who was playing whom, and when.  Don't make it more than it is.
     
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