– Nadal cruises to final with a straight sets win over Mikhail Youzhny.

World number one Rafael Nadal was just too good for Youzhny. After two defeats in semifinals the past two years (he lost to Andy Murray in 2008 and to Juan Martin Del Potro in 2009), the 24 year old Spaniard advanced to his first US Open final. With a win tonight, Nadal would become the seventh man in tennis history to complete a career Grand Slam.

– Djokovic stuns Federer in a five set thriller

Novak Djokovic saved 2 match points a 4-5 in the fifth, and after a grueling 3h 44 min match, he defeated Roger Federer to prevent the Nadal-Federer final everyone was hoping for.

To be honest, I was just closing my eyes and hitting forehands as fast as I can on match point. If it goes in, it goes in. If it goes out, just another loss to Federer in the U.S. Open. I managed to come back. I was very lucky.

– Kim Clijsters’ love story with New York continues

Kim Clijsters dismantled Vera Zvonareva 6-2 6-1 to win her third US Open trophy. She became the first woman to retain her title since Venus Williams in 2001.

Clijsters won her 21st consecutive match here and her third title in her past three tries. Zvonareva, as predicted, lost her nerve.

A little bit of experience definitely helps. I told her it’s tough. It took me six or seven finals before I finally got one. ‘Vera, keep it going. It will happen.

2010 US Open: day 2 recap

– Top seeds Rafael Nadal and Caroline Wozniacki win in straight sets and advance to the second round where they’ll meet (respectively) Denis Istomin and Kai-Chen Chang.
Things were much more complicated for Djokovic and Verdasco who endured 5 sets against Troicki and Fognini.
Number 4 seed Jelena Jankovic survive scare to beat number 96-ranked Romanian Simon Halep 6-4, 4-6, 7-5. Like Jankovic, 2006 champion Maria Sharapova needed 3 sets to defeat Australian Jarmila Groth.

Upset of the day: Arnaud Clément defeats Marcos Baghdatis 6-3, 2- 6, 1-6, 6-4, 7-5
Baghadtis, who beat Nadal in Cincinnati was stunned by french veteran Clément in 5 sets. Both players are former Australian Open runner-ups.

Seeds upsets: Na Li (8), Petrova (16), Safarova (26), Baghdatis (16), Gulbis (24), Monaco (30)

US player of the day: James Blake
Blake, quarterfinalist at Flushing Meadows in 2005 and 2006, is now ranked 108 and received a wild card to enter the tournament. He showed some of his past brilliance to secure a much needed victory against Kristof Vliegen.

Stat of the day: 25.2 – Number in millions of dollars of the potential 2010 US Open payout, including Olympus US Open Series bonuses.

Player of the day: Rafael Nadal
He faced (and saved) only one break point in his first round match against Gabashvili. Nadal extended his Grand Slam winning streak to 15 matches, after his titles at the French Open in June and Wimbledon in July.

French DJ Martin Solveig took part in the traditional charity event Children’s Day at Roland Garros a month ago, as he filmed the video for his single Smah (see some photos here).

Solveig’s video is now online. Let me know your thoughts…


Upset of the day 1:
Last year’s runner-up Andy Roddick crashes out to Yen-Hsun Lu in 5 sets. Roddick lost in five gruelling sets, surrendering 9-7 in the last after four-and-a-half hours. Lu became the first Chinese Taipei player to reach the quarterfinals of a Grand Slam, and the first man from Asia to reach the quarterfinals at a Major in fifteen years.

Upset of the day 2: Petra Kvitova defeats Caroline Wozniacki 6-0 6-2
Really can somebody explain me, how you can be world number 3 and lose 0 and 2 to a player who had never won a match at Wimbledon before this year. Really? Wozniacki’s Grand Slam performance are really disappointing since last year’s US Open final. It’s time to wake up, Caroline.

Battle of Belgium:
It was Manic Monday’s most expected match, and comeback queens Justine Henin and Kim Clijsters didn’t disappoint.
Their last meeting on grass was in the semifinals of Wimbledon 2006 and Henin won it. This time Kim overpowered Justine in 3 sets: 2-6 6-2 6-3. Kim leads now their head to head 13-12.

Battle of Wimbledon champions:
Serena Williams defeated Maria Sharapova 7-6 6-4, she will meet Li Na who beat the former Wimbledon junior champion Agnieszka Radwanska 6-3 6-2.

Other results: Nadal, Federer and Murray cruise through quarterfinals in straight sets. Djokovic defeated former Wimbledon champion Lleyton Hewitt in 4 sets.

Today’s women’s quarterfinals:
Serena Williams vs. Li Na
Petra Kvitova vs. Kaia Kanepi
Kim Clijsters vs. Vera Zvonareva
Tsvetana Pironkova vs. Venus Williams
Pretty difficult to be excited for those matches, what do you think?

Men’s quarterfinals:
Roger Federer vs. Tomas Berdych
Novak Djokovic vs Yen-Hsun Lu
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga vs Andy Murray
Robin Soderling vs Rafael Nadal

Their rivalry was listed as the third best rivalry of the past decade by the ATP, behind Federer-Nadal (of course) and Sampras-Agassi (kinda weird because they only met 6 times in the 00’s ).

In just over 6 years, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic already met 32 times (Federer and Nadal “only” met 28 times in 8 years). And they provided some intense matches: this year’s Australian Open final, the 2009 Madrid SF, the 2008 Olympic Games SF…

Rafael Nadal
Novak Djokovic

Quick facts:

– Nadal won five of eight of their Grand Slam matches.
– Nadal dominates on clay and grass, whereas Djokovic rules on hard courts.
– Nadal lead 2-1 in 2012: Djokovic won the Australian Open final on hard courts, and Nadal won in Monte Carlo and Rome on clay

In pink the Grand Slam matches, in gold the Olympic Games. You can click on the column to sort.

No. Year Tournament Surface Round Winner Score N. D. R. N.
1 2006 French Open Clay QF Nadal 6-4 6-4 retired 0 1
2 2007 Indian Wells Hard F Nadal 6-2 7-5 0 2
3 2007 Miami Hard QF Djokovic 6-3 6-4 1 2
4 2007 Rome Clay QF Nadal 6-2 6-3 1 3
5 2007 French Open Clay SF Nadal 7-5 6-4 6-2 1 4
6 2007 Wimbledon Grass SF Nadal 3-6 6-1 4-1 retired 1 5
7 2007 Canada (Montreal) Hard SF Djokovic 7-5 6-3 2 5
8 2007 Shanghai Hard (i) RR Nadal 6-4 6-4 2 6
9 2008 Indian Wells Hard SF Djokovic 6-3 6-2 3 6
10 2008 Hamburg Clay SF Nadal 7-5 2-6 6-2 3 7
11 2008 French Open Clay SF Nadal 6-4 6-2 7-6(3) 3 8
12 2008 London (Queen’s Club) Grass F Nadal 7-6(6) 7-5 3 9
13 2008 Cincinnati Hard SF Djokovic 6-1 7-5 4 9
14 2008 Beijing Hard SF Nadal 6-4 1-6 6-4 4 10
15 2009 Serbia v Spain Clay RR Nadal 6-4 6-4 6-1 4 11
16 2009 Monte Carlo Clay F Nadal 6-3 2-6 6-1 4 12
17 2009 Rome Clay F Nadal 7-6(2) 6-2 4 13
18 2009 Madrid Clay SF Nadal 3-6 7-6(5) 7-6(9) 4 14
19 2009 Cincinnati Hard SF Djokovic 6-1 6-4 5 14
20 2009 Paris Hard (i) SF Djokovic 6-2 6-3 6 14
21 2009 London Hard (i) RR Djokovic 7-6(5) 6-3 7 14
22 2010 US Open Hard F Nadal 6-4 5-7 6-4 6-2 7 15
23 2010 London Hard (i) RR Nadal 7-5 6-2 7 16
24 2011 Indian Wells Hard F Djokovic 4-6 6-3 6-2 8 16
25 2011 Miami Hard F Djokovic 4-6 6-3 7-6(4) 9 16
26 2011 Madrid Clay F Djokovic 7-5 6-4 10 16
27 2011 Rome Clay F Djokovic 6-4 6-4 11 16
28 2011 Wimbledon Grass F Djokovic 6–4 6–1 1–6 6–3 12 16
29 2011 US Open Hard F Djokovic 6–2 6–4 6-7 6–1 13 16
30 2012 Australian Open Hard F Djokovic 5-7 6–4 6-2 6–7 7-5 14 16
31 2012 Monte Carlo Clay F Nadal 6-3 6-1 14 17
32 2012 Rome Clay F Nadal 7-5 6-3 14 18

This match is without a doubt the best ATP match played in 2009.

Nadal had a tremenduous start of the year with wins at the Australian Open, Indian Wells, Barcelona, Monte Carlo and Rome. He seemed unbeatable on clay and was the clear favorite to win a record fifth consecutive Roland Garros title. But things didn’t really turned out that well for him.

With a win in Madrid, the Mallorcan would have been the first player in history to win the 3 Masters tournaments played on clay the same year.

Nadal and Djokovic met for the fourth time of the season in Madrid semi finals, Nadal having won their 3 previous meetings (Davis Cup and finals of Monte Carlo and Rome).

Rafael Nadal

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