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July 4, 2010

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Wimbledon 2010, London, England, UK
July 4, 2010
Editorial by Jane Voigt

 

Jane Voigt Photo
Jane Voigt

Nadal Wins 2nd Wimbledon, Notches 8th Major Title
 
July 4, 2010 -- Rafael Nadal had it easy today, although he showed great deference to his opponent Tomas Berdych.
 
"Sorry about today," Nadal told Berdych on court with Sue Barker of the BBC. "But, I wish you the best for the rest of the season."
 
But the facts are facts.
 
Nadal won his second Wimbledon men's singles title in three sets, all on breaks of serve: four total. The length of the match was a bit over two hours, a walk in the park for this guy. He won his second back-to-back Major title, never losing his serve. And for some extra pizzazz, Tomas Berdych succumbed to Centre Court pressure, although he denied it afterward, and to the pressure systematically applied by the Wimbledon Gentlemen's Singles Champion Rafael Nadal.
 
"His biggest weapon is his left hand," Berdych told the press. "It's not many players like that. It's really tough to find the right rhythm."
 
Mr. Nadal now steps up the ladder to number eight of all-time major winners, barely spending three weeks at number seven. At this lofty perch Nadal stands shoulder to shoulder with Fred Perry, Andre Agassi, Jimmy Connors, Ken Rosewall, and Ivan Lendl. Pretty good company for a 24-year-old super athlete.
 
Nadal went from winning Roland Garros to winning Wimbledon, for the second time. His first double dip came in 2008. That means for three years running two men, Nadal and Federer, have doubled their major titles from The French Open and Wimbledon. Bjorn Borg had been the last legend to accomplish that feat in 1980.
 
"It didn't happen since Borg," Nadal said. "So now last three years it happen twice. So how crazy is the life?"
 
To Nadal's credit, he has won five French Open titles, two Wimbledon titles, and one from The Australian Open. His biggest goal, he says, is to win The U. S. Open and have the honor of having clinched all four Majors.
 
"Never in my dreams I thought I'd win what I've won already," Nadal said, as reported on Twitter by Miguel Seabra of the Spanish press. "I think life. Fortune has been with me."
 
Nadal could not participate in the 2009 Wimbledon Championships because of trouble with his knees. With his health in good repair and his confidence polished to a glittering shine, the Spaniard has even more of a game to attack adversaries with.
 
His serve shows the most improvement. His ground game has become more aggressive and steadier in its aggression. His ability to change tactics and strategies at the most opportune moments has begun to separate him from fellow top-ten players. His intuition and court sense is keener, like a speedy search engine on the web. He thinks about offensive strategies and tries them. He does just about anything in the course of a competition win.
 
"I expect play my best in every point and try to fight every point, like the last [one]," Nadal began. "I just think about try to play point by point. Not thinking anymore about the next point."
 
But, for Nadal, it is the competitive path that rings his chimes. Okay, he loves to line up the trophies. However, deep down when you see him spit on the spot where Berdych's shot caught the line and gave him the game, you know Rafa's hot for retribution, even though he admits to being nervous.
 
"If you are not nervous in the final of Wimbledon, you are not human," Nadal said.
 
At 24, Nadal is poised to win more majors, ATP titles and possibly come close to or surpass the sixteen owned by the man at the top of the list, Roger Federer. To come close, Nadal will have to temper his tour schedule and stay on top of his health.
 
"I have to do treatment right now on the knees," Nadal said. "I have to have serious work, the same time to try to ready for the American season."
 
Nadal crushed Berdych's game and spirit early on in the first set, in the all-important seventh game. Nadal changed the pace and spin of his balls. To break, he hit a crazy-around-the-net post winner. Berdych never looked the same after that. The form and fantastic attitude fans saw from him in previous rounds vaporized.
 
Berdych's serve suffered, too, from whirly winds and his own high-ball toss, which wavered and threw his timing off. Berdych didn't change his strategy, either. He repeatedly took on the Spaniard from the baseline, never quite learning that to run with Nadal is like trying to run with the bulls of Pamplona.
 
Berdych showed signs of life, and won points, when his serve clicked and when he came to the net. At six-foot-five, Berdych should take a hard look at approaching the net and leaving the baseline far behind him.
 
Nadal said he plans to play his first hard-court match in Toronto at The Rogers Cup Masters 1000.
 
"Right now is enjoy the beach, fishing, golf, friends, party, and Mallorca."
 

Earlier Columns from this Event:
 
July 3, 2010 Wimbledon: Confirming Her Dominance, Serena Wins Fourth Wimbledon Title, 13th Major
July 2, 2010 Wimbledon: Nadal and Berdych In Men's Final
July 1, 2010 Wimbledon: Serena Williams and Vera Zvonareva Set for Finals
June 30, 2010 Wimbledon: Federer Out
June 29, 2010 Wimbledon: The Passage
June 28, 2010 Wimbledon: Seeds Fall, New Growth Springs Forth
June 27, 2010 Wimbledon: Odd Men In, Not Out
June 26, 2010 Wimbledon: Saluting The Women Into Second Week
June 25, 2010 Wimbledon: A Deeper Look
June 24, 2010 Wimbledon: Over But Never Forgotten
June 23, 2010 Wimbledon: Stay Tuned... There's More To Come
June 22, 2010 Wimbledon: At The Fringes
June 21, 2010 Wimbledon: What's Luck Got To Do With It?
 

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