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AO Day Nine: Nobody Goes Home Happy

Posted by gauloises1 on January 26, 2010

Andy Murray d. Rafael Nadal, 63 76(2) 30 ret. (knee injury)

This is just such a shame. It’s a shame because for two sets this was the best tennis of the tournament, a proper heavyweight match-up that should have been played out to the end. It’s a shame because Murray was well on his way to a famous victory that he never got the chance to finish. It’s a shame because the headlines will be dominated by the retirement rather than the quality of play from both, and it’s a shame that we’ll all have to endure yet more ‘is Rafa done?’ speculation. (He’s not.)

But above all, it’s a shame for Rafa and his fans. Sorry, guys.

On you go, Andy.

29 Responses to “AO Day Nine: Nobody Goes Home Happy”

  1. kefuoe said

    I’m aching for a new narrative to emerge out of this tournament.

    • gauloises1 said

      How do you mean?

      • kefuoe said

        I mean I’m over the “can Nadal’s style of play be sustained” story, and I agree that the Murray story could get a bit lost in the impending speculation. I do think Davydenko’s doing his part to give journalists something new to talk about, though.

  2. neil in toronto said

    Blech, gutted. Glad Rafa was smart enough to stop instead of playing on for months with the injury. Didn’t watch the match, but Rafa said that Andy was playing amazingly and had all his shots working and had all the options in the tight moments. Too bad Rafa’s knees are dominating the conversation ( tho i’m avoiding almost all news outlets), cause Andy really deserves his props for winning, even if it was by retirement. Obvs even Rafa thought he was the better player and thinks Andy will win the whole thing( according to his presser).

    • gauloises1 said

      I do think stopping was the smart decision, although god knows it must have killed him to do it. Andy did play, in all honesty, completely brilliantly and Rafa was playing pretty well too (I thought). It was such a great match and then this happened.

      So many commiserations, neil. That just sucks so much that I don’t know what else to say.

  3. harini said

    Oh Rafa. Sigh.

    I didn’t watch the match and I deleted my DVR of it after I found out he lost (not ‘cos I didn’t want to see him lose but ‘cos it’s one less match for me to catch up on hehe). Good to hear both were playing really well.

    I had a feeling this match would not be in Rafa’s favour. I didn’t think he’d retire though…I just thought Murray would totally overpower and outplay him. Looks like that happened anyway. Hope the knee isn’t too bad and that he’ll be back in no time.

    He made the second week. I’m happy for that, at least 🙂

  4. Daniel said

    Andy is playing great tennis, it looks like this could finally be the one.

  5. AmyLu said

    I’m numb. I really don’t have words right now — life has not been kind in the last 24 hours, as JJ and I received very sad news last night and then I woke up to this news. The tennis really pales in comparison, but I can’t lie: I’m so gutted for Rafa that he has knee issues so soon in the season. Many kudos to Andy. I didn’t watch a point of the match, but by all accounts, he played brilliantly. So very well done to him indeed.

  6. lauren said

    It always kills me when the two players I’d be happy to see win meet before the finals. And it kills me when Rafa has to suffer recurring injuries like that. But I’m a big Murray fan, so I’m really pleased that he progresses, and even more that he played so well.

  7. Cubbie said

    Congrats to Murray- good for him to make it to the semis.

    Gosh, I really wish that I could have a crystal ball so I could know what is going to happen with Rafa. To think about the huge turnaround since last year’s AO (that to me really started to manifest itself in Miami). I just want to see him happy out there again. The thing is, he did seem happy for much of the AO. And I think even if he had been able to play on and had lost to Murray he could have taken that, maybe a disappointment but not a setback. “It was a good match, etc.” He did seem very pleased with his play in the match in his presser. But now there appears to be a constant worry with him about injury (in part for very good reason) and his confidence, that was building- may have taken another hit. He needs a solid tournament with some good wins over top players soon- but he needs to not push himself and play before he is ready.

    • AmyLu said

      There’s a large part of me that hopes he takes off until Monte Carlo (but then I worry that with so much lay-off he’ll be rusty when he plays, and if he loses early on clay, what happens. *sighs*) — I just am not quite sure what the payoff to playing in Indian Wells and Miami is for him, as neither one will really help him all that much for the clay and grass swings (unless he were to somehow miraculously win one of the tournaments and ride high on confidence) and the wear and tear most likely won’t help as the season progresses.

      JJ really thinks in order to fully maximize his remaining years, he should tailor everything around Roland Garros and Wimbledon, as those two Slams will always be his best chance to win. I’m inclined to agree with him.

      • AmyLu said

        To quote JJ further (sorry I’m a little scattered and didn’t mean to hit post already): he’s already been number one, already won MS events on hard, and already won a GS on hard. He has nothing left to prove. I’m not quite sure Rafa feels that way (and I know for a fact not all reporters, journalists, and commentators feel that way), but I think there’s a lot of truth to that.

        All I’m asking for (and it’s a lot, but hey, I’m a fan so I can have high and unreasonable expectations) is one more French Open on the Grand Slam front. I think last year’s loss hurt a lot so I’d love to see him regain his crown there one more time.

        • Cubbie said

          Yes- I would love to see him regain the French. And I think if he does the crowd may actually be *gasp* non-hateful but they may be asking too much.

          I owuld just really like for him to reach 7 grand slams. That seems to be a nice number and a lot of greats have that number.

          I also agree that he really does not have much to prove on hard court anymore. I mean if a GS, Masters titles and an Olympic gold aren’t enough – then nothing will please some folks. 😉

      • kefuoe said

        All three of the ones you mentioned, Indian Wells, Miami and Monte Carlo, are Masters 1000 events. They are basically mandatory. I think it’s Barcelona, Rome and Madrid that may require a re-think.

        • AmyLu said

          Oh I know Indian Wells and Miami are mandatory. It’s just in an “ideal world” that’s what I’d have him skip — although if his knee is still not 100%, he would be “allowed” to skip them if he chose, without penalty under the new rules. I mean it would certainly hurt his ranking, but it’s looking very likely that he’ll be ranked 4, if not 5, by that point, and he can’t really pick up much in the way of points due to his play in that swing last year.

  8. Ela said

    I’ve seen Rafa’s game and let me tell you it was almost painfull to watch. Without him the competition lost it’s meaning, to me at least. Let’s just hope Marin will win this 😉

  9. Charlotte said

    For the first 2 sets this felt like a total classic-in-the-making 5-setter, so i was really sad (and a tad worried) to find out Nadal retired. I kind of feel that every highly anticipated match at the AO fell kind of short this year, like Hewitt v. Baghdatis in the 3rd round and Hewitt v. Federer in the 4th (my expectations were probably too high for that match though, I must admit). Hopefully we’ll see some classics in the quarters (Nole v. Tsonga, I’m so excited!!!)

  10. tennisfan76 said

    Gauloises, thanks so much for posting this when you’re not a Nadal fan, much appreciated. Sorry about Juan Martin BTW, hope he gets back to his best soon (though preferably not against Nadal). Rafa said himself that Andy was outplaying him and he didn’t want to make things worse, good call IMO. AmyLu, sorry to hear you’re having a difficult time, I always enjoy reading your comments on TW. JJ’s right, if Rafa could just concentrate on RG and Wimbledon I’d be a happy woman (tennis wise anyway). Like Lauren, Rafa and Andy M. are my favourite players (esp. now Marat’s retired), I’d be delighted if Andy won the AO. He looked really concerned about Rafa and was v. complimentary about him afterwards. I still don’t understand why some people insist he’s a miserable person (sigh).

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