Men’s Final:  Roger Federer (SUI) vs.  Rafael Nadal (ESP)
Their head-to-head means nothing currently as Federer has found the solution to Nadal’s game. Three times this year he has gotten the better on the Spaniard and two of those times were significant matches (Australian Open and Miami Open finals). While Federer is growing in confidence, Nadal’s confidence has probably taken a beating as a result of these three losses to his greatest rival.
The concern is that Federer has gotten into Nadal’s head; however, more troubling is the fact that Nadal seems at the moment unable to adjust his game to counter the fact that Federer now seems better equipped to handle the high bouncing/spinning balls to his backhand.
Nadal will have to bounce back and quickly because the clay court season is just around the corner and he will have to defend a significant amount of points from his Monte Carlo Rolex Masters title. He is the king of clay, but lately that has been threatened by a few of the other players. Perhaps his doing well on the hard courts even if he did not win a title will be the extra motivation that he needs to regain his dominance on clay.
No doubt today’s 3-6, 4-6 loss to Federer left a bad taste; however, Nadal is the ultimate competitor and although there is no obvious evidence at the moment, he is furiously trying to find a way to make the necessary changes in his game to allow him to regain his dominance over Federer. He can take the positive that he made it to three finals on hard court and that can only bode well for his clay court season.
SOURCE OF IMAGE: Zimbio