He balanced Carreño's defeat with his victory against Schwartzman (6-1 and 6-2) and managed to survive with Granollers in a dramatic double (6-4, 4-6 and 6-3)
Spanish tennis is Rafa Nadal. Like it or not, the reality is that the rest, except Djokovic and Federer, is many, many bodies away. Light years. And that's why Rafa had to appear to prevent Spain from staying out of the new Davis Cup in the quarterfinals against Argentina. Nadal balanced Carreño's defeat with a tremendous game against Diego Schwartzman. He melted it for 6-1 and 6-2 in 60 minutes, yes one hour. As if he was in a hurry to play double with Marcel Granollers. There, at the decisive point, he was also the protagonist to defeat the Argentine couple, González-Mayer, by 6-4, 4-6 and 6-3 in two hours and 26 minutes. Spain will be measured in semifinals with Great Britain. Andy Murray's teammates settled their tie against Germany on the fast track. Edmund and Evans outperformed Kohlschreiber and Struff.
How Rafa is going to be missed! For everything he has done, for everything he has left to do and for nights like the one lived in the Magic Box. In singles and in double. There were those who asked Rafa for the three semifinal games and to repeat in a hypothetical final. Nadal was too much for Argentina. "The Peque" Schwartzman was smaller than ever because of the world's number one. Rafa appeared as a rocket. He took out the hammer pylon and the game was a pim pam pum of Spanish winning punches. The Argentine needed to ask the chair judge for permission to stand behind one of the clocks and let the storm subside. Rafa's was a perfect storm, a persistent search of the lines in each of his strokes. His gesture said it all. Rafa was even more concentrated than Nadal. In just eight minutes he had signed up the first three games. As if the Spanish had decided not to be faithful to his leisurely, rhythmic, orderly game. It was a crusher. The best indoor Nadal of the season. Sliding down the track, as if warming up for the doubles match.
Schwartzman looked at Gastón Gaudio for some advice to stop the cyclone in front of him. Bruguera didn't need to say anything. Rafa hit everything and almost everything ended inside. It was a runaway foal that had signed up the first set in 26 minutes. Without truce, missing his usual sets almost always close to the hour, Nadal did not stop. He achieved a break in the third game and silenced the lively Argentine parish. After eight wins and no loss to Schwartzman, the ninth came in the new Davis.
And if it had been for him, he would have started the doubles match immediately after finishing number one in the albiceleste. He had to wait for the regulation half an hour. He came back and made it as unleashed as the previous game began. He started taking off, saved two break balls in the fifth game and was the guide of Granollers. With its momentum, Spain put the party on track, but Argentina did not descend. The second set was as if Rafa took a truce to return to the load. In a critical situation, with a set ahead to decide who measured the British, Nadal threw himself over the entire Magic Box.
Rafa achieved that the defeat of Pablo Carreño against Guido Pella remained in a simple anecdote. They were agonized two hours and 38 minutes until they fell 6-7 (3/7), 7-6 (7/4) and 6-1. The balance that was guessed before the game (the Spanish, 27 of the world; the Argentine, 25; 2-0 adjusted for Pablo in the previous ones) was confirmed at the center in the first two sets. When Pablo is daring, his tennis makes him "top 10". And so it showed in the first tie break. It was not cut. He is able to work the points very well and has enough patience to wait for the winning blow. Anchored at the bottom of the track, he dedicated himself to moving Pella and knowing how to wait. The Argentine was increasingly forced. Their blows had to look more for the lines, the climbs had to be a little more forced and in a limited situation it grew. The tenth game marked the temperature of the drama. It was ten minutes of fighting plagued with alternatives that led to a new tie break. The Argentine shook his head and after more than two hours of fighting the temperature continued to rise. So much that Carreño melted. The premiere of Pablo in the new Davis Cup, caused by the death of Roberto Bautista's father, ended badly. "Before Pella the pressure has been able to me", confessed the Spaniard. The one that never alters Nadal. To which the number one in the world looks, greets and frightens.
. (tagsToTranslate) Davis Cup (t) Rafael Nadal (t) Tennis