Djokovic v Nadal Episode IV: A New Hope
June 9, 2012 12:10 PM   Subscribe

Tomorrow at Roland Garros, Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal will play in their fourth consecutive grand slam final, making them the first pair of men to dominate the majors for an entire year.

Djokovic has beaten Nadal in the three previous finals (and four of the six other ATP finals they have contested in 2011-2012) and is playing for a non-calendar-year Grand Slam. Nadal is hoping to surpass his own record of six French Open titles (which he currently shares with Bjorn Borg).

Serena Williams bested her sister Venus in four straight majors in 2002-2003, making them the only pair of women to dominate a year of majors.
posted by pjenks (15 comments total)
And today Maria Sharapova became the 6th woman in the open era to win a career Grand Slam by wining the Women's Singles Final.
posted by Edogy at 12:24 PM on June 9, 2012

After watching the tournament so far I have a feeling that Rafa will get his revenge tomorrow...
posted by neilb449 at 12:42 PM on June 9, 2012

These are two tennis players I appreciate, who are probably among the five greatest to ever play the game, who would destroy Sampras or Borg or McEnroe or Laver on almost any surface, and the game may well be a five set thriller, but it won't be pretty. Nadal, whose own game is brilliant but utterly inelegant, tends to bring out the worst in Djokovic (whose match with Tsonga earlier in the week was an extraordinary delight) so I'm expecting violent hitting, amazing defence and five hours of Rafa pulling his shorts out of his arse before checking his groin and pushing his hair behind his ears while Nole bounces the ball interminably at the other end.
posted by tigrefacile at 1:02 PM on June 9, 2012 [6 favorites]

I'm a Fed, Rafa, Nole man, in that order. Go Rafa.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 1:09 PM on June 9, 2012 [2 favorites]

My gut says Rafa is going to win, but they both have the ability to raise their levels as needed. Djokovic is considered the best returner in the game right now, so that could frustrate Rafa. Djokovic has seemed kind of flat and not at his best throughout the tournament although he got the job done, but we can't predict how he's going to come out tomorrow. I'm hoping for an exciting match.
posted by AnnElk at 1:50 PM on June 9, 2012

I have a feeling that Rafa will get his revenge tomorrow...

I don't know if it counts as "revenge" for Rafa to beat somebody on clay. I mean, I know what you're getting at, but the man is a damn Terminator at the French open. He's won 6 of the last 7 French Opens, beginning in the 3rd year of his career.

I think it would be much more of an upset / revenge play, in some sense, if Djokovich were to win tomorrow. He has been absolutely steamrolling the tennis world for going on 2 years now, and Rafa at Roland Garros is the only man who has been able to get in his way.

Bring it on! I only hope I can get myself up early enough to actually watch it.
posted by Joey Buttafoucault at 2:49 PM on June 9, 2012

I love the violent hitting and brutally arcing topspin shots that Nadal produces. I also think 'pretty' is an entirely aesthetic judgment, because watching Nadal play is, to me, a gorgeous event.

I also love to watch Djokovic when he's returning serve. He's remarkable.

So while the match won't be balletic, it will be ballistic, and that's plenty for me.
posted by yellowcandy at 2:53 PM on June 9, 2012

I love both guys but have to disagree with anyone suggesting Rafa's game is not gorgeous or elegant, I mean I know what they are getting at but for me, at some point, his raw power becomes beauty in itself and I find him an absolute joy to watch.

Fed's game comes from his lovely brain, Nole's is all about power and flexibility but Rafa is like an alien, there is no one is tennis history who is at all like him, he is a one-off mould breaker, and I love the guy. He does everything wrong and yet somehow makes it work.
posted by Cosine at 5:34 PM on June 9, 2012 [2 favorites]

Poor Roger.
posted by crunchland at 6:40 PM on June 9, 2012

Tennis has a steroid problem.
posted by Chuckles at 10:51 PM on June 9, 2012

between this, the NBA post-season, and Euro 2012, I will be doing my patriotic part to ensure that executives and policy makers will believe they can squeeze even more productivity out of the workforce.
posted by anewnadir at 11:23 PM on June 9, 2012

This is quite the match, no? I find myself rooting for Nole more than I might like to admit...
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 10:02 AM on June 10, 2012

The whole falling-on-the-ground-after-winning thing gets kind of old.
posted by pdq at 12:59 PM on June 10, 2012

Papa Djokovic was funny today, praising the lord when Rafa's ball finally landed outside the line.

6-4 6-3 2-6 1-2 (Djokovic up a break in the fourth)

Resumes 7am EDT tomorrow on if the rain breaks.
posted by pjenks at 5:02 PM on June 10, 2012

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