The sun shone brightly on Roland Garros, the sky azure, the temperature rose in the eighties. What could have cost Rafael Nadal more than he had against David Goffin in the third round in court? No player of modern times has had more success on sunny days than Nadal. He always thought that the heat would make his already fiendish topspin in the forehand bind even higher. Sweat is a condition he willingly accepts. He causes his opponents to suffer excessively on such afternoons. And for that reason, the poor Goffin was repeatedly pressed hard against the incomparable Spaniard.
Goffin has tried to move forward after a disappointing and disturbed 2018 season. He finished in seventh place in the world in 201
No wonder he started his competition against the redoubt today Nadal was so full of uncertainties. The Spaniard lunged at her and him in the first set. In the first three games he conceded only two points. In four competitive games, he lost only one point. Nadal majestically swept this chapter, winning it 6-1 in 28 ruthless minutes.
Goffin increased his game in the second set and allowed Nadal to work considerably harder. Nadal secured a break in the opening game, holding 2-0 up well and seemed to be in the third game with a 0-30 chance. A break could have demoralized the Belgian. But Nadal did not exploit his opening unusually. He made some casual mistakes from the backhand. Goffin swung freer. He held on playfully.
Nadal did not care about his missed opportunity. Despite a double failure at the start of the following game and a 0-30 deficit, he held out a run of four consecutive points 3-1 and never looked back. With 3: 2, 40: 30 Nadal finished the game with an elegant forehand drop shot winner. Nadal went from 5-3 to 15 with a slight hold, including an ace on the penultimate point of the game. And then he decided it was time to break again. He did so in the ninth game, sealing the set 6-3. He guarded his serve so carefully that Goffin had no reason to be optimistic.
Goffin performed well in the third set. He stayed with Nadal until 3: 3 and held in the sixth game with a beautifully executed inside-out forehand winner. At this point, Goffin Nadal was forced to dig a little deeper, play at a higher level, and feel a little more tension as he did his business. Nadal had kept him completely in check in the replacements that nearly all right-handers were afraid of, driven the heavy topspin with his forehand high on the opponent's two-hander and inevitably made mistakes. But Goffin found his reach. In the eighth game he loved the 4: 4 with another backhand winner, the Whistler Crosscourt.
Nadal had been impenetrable on his own serve. Another forehand drop-shot winner at the first point of the ninth game took him 15-0 in the lead. But Goffin persuaded a mistake with a deep forehand down the line, and then Nadal missed and hit a forehand across the board. Now Goffin on a forehand discharged the line for a winner to make it 15-40. Two points later he prevailed dynamically and set with a fine return another stunning forehand winner.
Unlikely, Goffin was in action on the third set 5: 4, having broken Nadal for the first time in the game with a stream of spectacular shots. He had 15-15 double mistakes, but played the rest of the game flawlessly. The secret of Goffin's successful set was simple: he broke his forehand and tied a winner from that side in the last game of the set by 100 m / h. Averaging in the range of 92 M.P.H. And despite this bold strategy, he hardly missed. It was not an easy task to get this set after two away games after losing in a straight set.
Nevertheless, Nadal was not overly concerned. He became tight in the opening game and made a double mistake in the 40-0. But a service winner in the T brought Nadal to the point for the fourth time and he held on as Goffin missed a backhand return.
Shadows came across the field at this point in the game. The conditions had changed, but not Nadal's gameplay. In the fourth game of the fourth set, he worked meticulously against Goffin's backhand and persuaded mistakes. Nadal came on time with 30 to a 3-1 from the legs. The rest of the way, though not at its peak and a little worried, he was unshakeable. Nadal made sure that Goffin masterfully met two-handed people over the shoulders. He no longer allowed the Belgian to unleash this devastatingly strong forehand.
Nadal went into the Round of 16 and dismissed Goffin 6-1, 6-3, 4-6, 6-3. The match became a bit more complicated when Nadal's most passionate admirers wanted it, but the fact remains that he was serving his serve lost only once and controlled the pace very well in three of the four sets. It was a good job.
The Spaniard has raised his career match record at Roland Garros to an unimaginable 89: 2. The view here is that the only player in the field who can and will prevent Nadal from conquering a 12th crown this year is called Novak Djokovic.