Sunday, June 15, 2008

Rafa Captures First Grass Title at Queen's Club

Rafael Nadal officially went green - and am not referring to his recent Nike outfit - as he managed to grab his first title on grass by defeating his nagging rival, Novak Djokovic, in the Queen's Club final on Sunday.

The world number 2 took off to a shaky start as he found himself trailing Djokovic 3-0 in the opening set before he stormed back, leveling the match and taking it into a tie-break where he prevailed and moved on to bag the second set to seal a 7-6, 7-5 victory over the Serb.

This is Nadal's first grass-court title and it is exactly what he needs heading into Wimbledon, where he has reached the final the past 2 years but failed to overcome the resident King at the All England Club, Roger Federer.

Djokovic, who has had a good run at Queen's Club toppling Hewitt and Nalbandian en route to the final, still remains a hot contender to the Wimbledon title despite his defeat today. The reigning Aussie Open champion has reached the semis at Wimbledon last year where he also lost to Nadal, but it was because he sustained an injury and had to retire.

Meanwhile, Federer highlighted the grass-court action in Germany as he defeated home favorite, Philipp Kohlschreiber, 6-3, 6-4, to clinch a fifth Halle title and extend his winning streak on grass to 59 matches. The last time Federer lost on grass was in 2002 when he fell to Mario Ancic in the first round at Wimbledon. It's been cruise control on grass every since!

The build-up to Wimbledon this year places the three top players, Federer, Nadal and Djokovic all in top contention for the title. It's tough to tell what's gonna happen but I must say, it's looking good for the Spaniard.

Who do you think can pull it off this year at Wimbledon?!?!?


van said...

Hey Reem. I'm going to have to go with Federer. Nadal's win yesterday was VERY impressive; even moreso that Federer's because of the level of competition he faced. But I think Federer's just the better grass-court player.

Rasberry said...

For Wimbleton 2008, I am hoping that Rafa will win and I hope that Novak will be on Federer's draw. Anyway, the final between Novak and Rafa was very exciting. I think I must have watched it over three times. I cannot wait to see the Wimbleton. It will be entertaining for sure.

Reem said...

Hey Van,
I agree that Federer is without a doubt, the better grass-court player, but Rafa came too close last year and the buildup to this year's Wimbledon is even better for Rafa especially that he won in Queen's. I think Rafa is back in Federer's head, which can make all the difference in the final - that's assuming they both make it to the final of course.

Rasberry, I am rooting for Rafa like you. I hope he meets Federer in the final and beats him :)