Hi folks, long time no post. I never got to making a post about the Indian Wells final. I was disappointed when Del Potro lost so I didn’t feel like making a post right after the match, and ever since I’ve been too busy. Now it is my off weekend again and I have some time to catch up with everything that’s been happening in the tennis world. Miami has been going on for the last week or so but let me just get back to that Indian Wells final for a second. Del Potro started out a bit slow as was expected after beating Murray and Djokovic in tough three setters. He got broken early on but soon found his rhythm and started ripping those monster ground strokes. He had Nadal running around the court like a headless chicken again and won 6 straight games if I remember correctly, going up a break in second set as well.
It looked like another US Open-like beating was on the cards again, but Del Potro’s tiredness coupled with Nadal’s superhuman and suspicious defensive capabilities started to tell. Nadal broke back and the momentum shifted once more. I thought the momentum might swing again in Del Potro’s favor in the third set but he was too tired. Nadal was playing unreal tennis but you could see Del Potro missing some shots from tiredness. The Nadal challenge proved to be one challenge too many for Del Potro on his quest to complete a fairy tale run. Beating Murray, Djokovic, and Nadal consecutively may just be an impossible task. I don’t think it has ever been done anyway. If one guy was capable of doing it it was Del Potro, because when he goes on a hot run he is extremely destructive. We already saw that at the US Open in 2009.
The fact that even him with his massive ground strokes could not put Nadal away is enough to raise suspicion already. And remember Nadal was only playing in his 4th tournament after an 8 month hiatus from the tour. He now has won the most titles of any player this year too, after a late start to the year. It’s just crazy how fast he has come back, like he wasn’t away from the tour at all. I think two things can be deducted here. First of all his injury doesn’t seem to have been very serious at all, and that his loss to Rosol at Wimbledon injured his pride more than anything. He didn’t have any problems with his injury during Indian Wells that’s for sure, covering the court like superman. The other thing that we can deduct is that the suspicion of doping increases. Nadal is now 26, the age where a baseline grinder like him no doubt starts to decline, yet he looks as fresh as a spring chicken.
Make no mistake, Nadal was right at the top of his game in Indian Wells. I would say his draw was moderately difficult. Gulbis was on fire so that was a pretty tough opponent who he grinded down in the 4th round. Then he had Roger who was not into the match, and then Berdych who he owns. In the final he had Del Potro who was tough but tired after a really tough draw. So credit to Nadal for winning the title. Even if he is doping then it’s still tough to do what he did. But on the other hand his draw was not nearly as difficult as Del Potro’s and therefor he got a tired Del Potro in the final as well. It’s hard for me to discuss Nadal because the suspicion of doping surrounding him is becoming stronger by the day. On the one hand I want to respect him for his achievements but on the other hand if he is doping then they are not that great.
He has this superhuman aura when he is on the tennis court and then there is all this weird off court stuff that happens, like leaving the tour for 8 months and then coming back as if he was never away. Or for instance developing a huge serve just for two weeks to win the US Open and complete the career grand slam, just to lose that serve right after the tournament again. Personally I think tennis is full of doping. I don’t trust people, especially when there are so many loopholes in the testing for doping and so much money involved. People are greedy and lust after fame and fortune, to the point that they would do anything to achieve that end. Nadal has the ideal personality for a doper as well. He is always going after the appearance fees at the cost of his health. I don’t doubt that he would damage his health in the long run to satisfy his superficial short term lust after fortune and fame.
I don’t buy his humbleness either. I think it is just a mask he puts on in front of the public to hide what it really behind it – an insatiable lust after fame and fortune. This can clearly be seen by the way he acts on the tennis court. His unsportsmanlike conduct is notorious. He is always trying to psyche or intimidate his opponents(the shoulder charge against Rosol at Wimbledon immediately comes to mind). I don’t trust someone who’s on court personality is so drastically different from his off court personality. It is just too much of a contradiction. I find it much easier to trust Roger for instance who is pretty consistent in his on and off court personalities. Roger may be arrogant, but it is the arrogance of honesty, of saying it as it is. As long as someone is honest their arrogance don’t bother me much because at least the person is real.
I much prefer that over someone who is falsely humble, which I believe Nadal is. I have said this before and I will say this again: I do not trust Nadal. Not for a second. If someone was to ask me whether I think Nadal is doping my answer would be: Without a shadow of a doubt. But since there is no concrete proof of it there is no point on dwelling on it. Every once in a while I will make a post where I can no longer ignore the obvious, but you will know that I rarely speak about it. It just makes Fedfans look bad, like we are looking for excuses. After the Fedal mach in Indian Wells I was criticizing Roger and didn’t say a word about the possibility of Nadal doping. Rather I was blaming Roger for his body language and lack of passion, even at the cost of my readers becoming furious at me. So no one can accuse me of looking for excuses.
But as you know I am not unnecessarily hard on Roger and will also look at the other side of the story. It’s not just a straight forward situation. I can try to blame Roger for his losses only so much until I can’t help noticing the suspicion about doping surrounding Nadal anymore. All this time I have tried to somehow overlook all the suspicion, but there comes a point when it just becomes too obvious. You have to remember that Nadal was an early bloomer. He turned pro in 2001 and has been around for a long time. And he plays the most taxing game style in the history of the sport. It simply defies belief how he retrieves time after time, year after year balls that are irretrievable for any other player. You would think that after 12 years on tour playing a brutally taxing game he would start to lose a step, but it never happened. In Indian Wells it was as if he stepped on a court for the first time.
Del Potro was hitting monstrous forehands but Nadal would grind down his will by retrieving the ball time and time again. Enough is enough folks. This is becoming laughable. I just can’t stand by and keep my mouth shut anymore. I was going to say something about Miami too but this has already turned out to be quite a long post and I will try to get in another post tomorrow as well. The final is being played tomorrow anyway between Murray and Ferrer, and if Murray wins he will overtake Roger in the rankings which I totally expect to happen.