Nadal d. Gasquet: Recap and Detailed Stats

Not often do we come away from a straight-set victory with newfound respect for the loser, but that’s the appropriate reaction today.

As I discussed this morning, Richard Gasquet has never accomplished much of anything against Rafael Nadal. The 10-0 head-to-head, if anything, disguises how lopsided it has been.

Today, for two sets, the Frenchman came as close to going toe-to-toe with Nadal as he probably ever will. From the start, he was playing a much more varied game than we are accustomed to from him, serving aggressively, rushing the net at any provocation, and even standing inside the stadium to return serve.

Despite getting broken three times, Gasquet never really went away. After he lost his first service game, it looked like another Nadal-administred drubbing in the works, but Richard held serve for the remainder of the set, finishing at 6-4.

In the second, he once again lost the first game of the set on serve, but went one better. He broke Nadal back, the first service game Nadal has lost in New York. Gasquet took advantage of Rafa’s carelessness to stay on serve until they reached a tiebreak.

Then came the disappointment of the match. Gasquet opened the breaker with a double fault, and serving at 1-6, he doubled once more. That was the only sign of the passive, unthreatening Richard we got all day.

The third set was more lopsided, though Gasquet kept playing aggressive tennis. Nadal was just too good. (Gasquet didn’t help, double faulting twice from 30-30 in the final game, but in the end, it was just the difference between 6-2 and 6-3.)

For Gasquet to beat Rafa, he would have to play the match of a lifetime. He didn’t come close to doing that today, but he did show up with a better set of tactics than he generally brings to bear. While a more varied attack from the Frenchman won’t earn him a spot in the top five, it will ensure he remains in the top ten.

Here are the complete point-by-point stats for the match, and in case you missed it earlier, here’s my recap of the Djokovic-Wawrinka semifinal.

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2 Comments

Filed under Match charting, Rafael Nadal, Richard Gasquet, U.S. Open

2 responses to “Nadal d. Gasquet: Recap and Detailed Stats

  1. Rick Devereux

    Jeff – What do you do to chart a match ? Do you have help?

    You are amazing at getting these charts and write-ups out so quickly, two in a day.

    The networks should be paying you a lot of money to get you or your system.

    Rick

    • Thanks! I am greatly assisted by plenty of sugar in both solid and liquid form. Otherwise, I’m on my own :).

      For the last few weeks I’ve been working on a system for charting matches, which is more or less settled. Once the Open is over, I’m going to introduce it in more detail and invite everybody to get involved. The charting itself is pretty work-intensive (whoever is doing it has to be tracking every shot) but converting the chart to the data tables is 99% automated.

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