[CR3] Rafael Nadal (ESP) vs. [CR14] Gilles Simon (FRA)
It was almost an easy victory for Nadal against a player that can be dangerous. Simon proved that in the second set, down 2-5 with Nadal serving for the match. Nadal struggled to close out the match, in part because of uncertainty, but also due to Simon’s crafty play. His failure to close out the match at 5-2 emphasizes the persistent detrimental effects of his low confidence. He finally won 6-2, 6-4; however, realistically what are his chances against [CR6] Milos Raonic (CAN)? Although he has never lost to Raonic, recent experience has shown that to be irrelevant in his current fragile state.
Sock’s comeback halted by Federer
Sock could not come back again from a set down because across the net was none other than Federer. Sock did not execute his game plan and his shot selection and placement were highly questionable, fatigue perhaps? As you watched the match, the disparity in ability was quite obvious. Sock is talented, but Federer still amazes with his grace and court savvy. Sock was unprepared for the talent that’s Federer and offered minimal resistance to Federer’s onslaught. He should not be too discouraged losing 3-6, 2-6 to Federer. Although today he was no match for Federer, he has potential and he should view this as a valuable learning experience.