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If Andy wants to beat Rafa consistently he needs to treat him like he does Djoko

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ProdigyEng
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In recent interviews we have seen both Andy and Novak saying that their once close friendship is now more of a professional one... I think this has helped Andy a lot in matches vs Nole, and whilst he's still respectful to Nole, he is a lot more hungry in their matches and you can see Andy fighting a LOT more.

I think Andy needs to do the same with Rafa. I will probably get stick for this but I think the fact Andy loses a lot to Rafa is because he respects him TOO much. 13-5 head to head is just woeful and for a player of Andy's standards the head to head should be a lot more even. We all know he's got all the tools to beat Rafa, he's done it before, but 5 times is simply not enough. Andy needs to work on his mental game vs Rafa and not be afraid to kick the ass of his 'friend'.
[ Last edit by Mark August 05, 2013, 09:31 AM ] IP Logged
xxdanixx
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In some respects I agree with you,but I think it's important to remember-we haven't seen Andy play Rafa since 2011.That's so long ago now,and so much has happened in Andy's career since-not least of which was a significant improvement in his mental strength. Rafa hasn't actually played this Andy-2 time slam champion Andy!!-so we don't know how Andy will fare against him yet.
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angiebabez
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Yeah I agree with Dani, I'm eager to see Rafa play the new and improved Andy to see how it all plays out. Is Rafa playing Montreal or cinci? Anyone know.
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hugoagogo69
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Mentioned this recently! The title infers that Rafa is the one to beat at the moment!! Without sounding too cocky, things are a bit different now from when they last played.
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ProdigyEng
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Mentioned this recently! The title infers that Rafa is the one to beat at the moment!! Without sounding too cocky, things are a bit different now from when they last played.

Not really. I am inferring that Andy needs to beat Rafa more often. Not doing so will seriously damage Andy's chance of a) becoming world number 1 b) if they face this year, remaining world number 2
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Connor
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Yeah I agree with Dani, I'm eager to see Rafa play the new and improved Andy to see how it all plays out. Is Rafa playing Montreal or cinci? Anyone know.

Yes, he is.
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The Gnome
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Not really. I am inferring that Andy needs to beat Rafa more often. Not doing so will seriously damage Andy's chance of a) becoming world number 1 b) if they face this year, remaining world number 2

Well in order for him to start closing the gap in the H2H they actually need to play each other first, they have annoyingly managed to avoid each other so far.
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hugoagogo69
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Not really. I am inferring that Andy needs to beat Rafa more often. Not doing so will seriously damage Andy's chance of a) becoming world number 1 b) if they face this year, remaining world number 2

Point taken, but yeah they do need to actually playing each other. I should have said it infers they have been playing each other regularly. Andy has such a point to prove against Rafa especially in the slams!!
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Rachie
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I highly doubt this is a problem tbh. Andy is competitive even with people he likes alot like his brother and his team, Andy wants to win whatever the game against whoever it is.

The Andy that played Rafa in 2011 is a very different Andy to the one he is today, this was pre-Lendl. I reckon beating Mr Nadal is pretty high on Andys to do list this summer!
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laundry
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Andy's main problem against Nadal is that Rafa often plays out of this world against him. Andy has commonly played some of his best tennis against Rafa in the past but Nadal seems to like the match-up and steps up to another level.
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snorkel.maiden
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I've been thinking about this for a while. I'd like to see them play again soon- assuming Nadal is seeded 5th for the USO it could happen then of course, if not before.

Though of course we still don't know about the knees. Nadal doesn't like hard courts. It remains to be seen how far he gets with any of the upcoming tournaments assuming he plays.
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snorkel.maiden
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Tho I forgot- Nadal will be 4th won't he! Federer will be the 5th seed danger.
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dex
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Tho I forgot- Nadal will be 4th won't he! Federer will be the 5th seed danger.
So it is still possible to get both on Andy's side of the draw, like Wimbledon, only now reversed Fed in Quarters, Nadal in semis.
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snorkel.maiden
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So it is still possible to get both on Andy's side of the draw, like Wimbledon, only now reversed Fed in Quarters, Nadal in semis.

Yup- but imagine if he defended successfully having beaten all three of them along the way!
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teejay1
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I can see where you are coming from Prodigy, in a way, but I don't think being friends with an opponent stops Andy beating them, not with his competitive streak. Where I do think the change in the relationship with Djokovic signifies though, is that Djokovic now sees Andy as a threat, a serious threat. I have to say that I watched the Wimbledon final with the thought in the back of my mind that we were watching history being made, but we were also seeing a relationship change right in front of us as well. I think the respect will continue to be there, but I don't think we'll see many times in the future where Andy will gate-crash a Djokovic interview, as he did last year in Shanghai. Of course, Andy had won the USO by then, and Djokovic did win Shanghai after Andy had match points, but still. For me there was something in the Wimbledon final that showed a definite shift in the relationship, not to them becoming enemies as such, but to their relationship becoming a lot more business-like and distant.

When Djokovic said a while ago that it was difficult to be close friends with Andy while they are still playing, I have to admit that I cheered out loud. It seemed obvious to me that it was because he perceives the threat Andy poses and takes it seriously. That has to be good for Andy. I'm not quite sure that Novak meant what he said as a compliment, but I took it as one.

Some of you will think I'm crackers if you look at the H2H, but my feeling with Nadal is that he is well aware of the threat Andy poses. I think Nadal has known for a long time that Andy is capable of beating him if he plays less than his best himself. Andy has beaten him in slams, admittedly not for a while, but he has, so I'm sure Nadal has known that Andy is capable of doing it. The difference for me is whether Andy has truly believed he can consistently beat Nadal. I don't think he did believe that in the past. I think he now believes he is capable of beating anyone, if he plays to his ability.

What I think Andy has done, which to my mind helps him with any opponent, is win the battle with himself. Take that semi at Wimbledon in 2011 for example. Was it me or was Andy playing that first set with a 'Do not make a mistake, do not miss', attitude? Well, for a while it worked. Andy was a set and a break up when he missed a forehand. Andy got down on himself. He made another error. He got more down on himself. From then on Nadal must have thought all his birthdays and Christmases had come at once. Andy began to lose his grip on the match and Nadal took control. Nadal won in four, and I have to say I was gutted. I honestly felt Andy had lost the match between the ears as much as with his game, perhaps more so.

What I think Andy has learned is that you can't afford to lose control of yourself too much if you want to win, especially against people like Djokovic, Nadal and Federer. Getting frustrated is one thing, they all do that, but you can't afford to let that boil over and impair your ability to think and be proactive. Andy might still get frustrated at times, even now, but it doesn't last. He regroups quickly, looks for a way in, not a way out.

The Andy of 2013 is a totally different animal from the person Nadal played at Wimbledon in 2011. Nadal probably did have the upper hand then, but things are very different now. In the past Andy might have been the underdog, but I don't think he is anyone's underdog anymore. I think Nadal will find him a very different opponent when they meet again.

[ Last edit by teejay1 August 24, 2013, 06:22 PM ] IP Logged
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