Nadal and Delpo to square off in Thailand. Event starts in a week.
Posted by tennisplanet on September 20, 2010
Is this the best time for Delpo to be meeting Nadal? Maybe. Maybe not.
Nadal is clearly on a ’08-like run when he won 7 titles including Olympics punctuated with a four straight title run (Roland Garros, Queens, Wimbledon and Toronto) on three different surfaces. Players who beat him that season? Youzhny, Tsonga (AO), Seppi, Roddick, Djokovic (twice), Davydenko, Ferrero, Murray and Simon. That’s not really the elite ruling the tour then pointing to leaving the door open.
Who has he lost to this year? Davydenko, Murray (twice), Ljubicic, Roddick, Lopez and Baghdatis. So despite the run he is still vulnerable. Besides, the Delpo shot that neutralizes Nadal’s game completely is not such a delicacy that it’s likely to suffer from being inactive too drastically. Heck, it might be the most routine shot in his repertoire. Ball bouncing straight into his backhand hitting zone with more than enough clearance due to both the ball bounce and Delpo’s height is not such a puzzle.
For Nadal, it will be his turn to land on the pad with lot to lose and nothing to gain. You cannot lose to a guy who’s been off for almost a year on his first outing specially when you just got done rewriting the history books. Even a close match will be considered a loss and an actual loss will place Delpo safely into a spot Nadal currently enjoys vis-a-vis Federer. Add the fact that 90% of the world considers Delpo as the ONLY hurdle that can stop Nadal from totally owning the tour for couple of years – and you know an unfavorable result WILL have far-reaching consequences.