MELBOURNE, Australia – Rafael Nadal has plenty of chances to get back into tennis at this Australian Open after missing a game he played with enthusiasm for a long time.
At age 35, his latest comeback from injury has now seen him reach the semifinals, breaking his three-way relationship with Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer and winning just two of his 21st Grand Slam singles titles.
But it also saw him on defense on Tuesday after his opponent Denis Shapovalov of Canada claimed that Nadal had benefited from the win in the fifth set by winning the fifth set 6-3, 6-4, 4. -6, 3-6, 6-3, four hours and eight minutes.
Nadal politely denied the allegations made by the young Canadian Shapovalov. “I think he’s wrong,” Nadal said.
Shabovalov, who certainly did not help his cause by playing a difficult, erroneous game to drop his serve early in the fifth set, did not take the defeat exactly, smashing his racket shortly after his final match on the blue hard court at the Rod Laver Arena. The volley moved wide. It was completely different with Natalie, who in her 20-year professional career has never beaten a cheater in anger during a match.
But Nadal, the Spanish champion who first met Shapovalov as a nine-year-old ball boy during the Canadian Open in Montreal, then lost his first match in 2017 in the same city in Hollywood style.
However, Shapovalov was once about the Spanish player, but he did not back down on Tuesday: Nadal complained that he was allowed more time between points than allowed during and after the match.
After winning the first set, Nadal changed his clothes and slowly left the chair following what referee Carlos Bernardus called “time”. Shapovalov picked up the balls and prepared to serve as he had been waiting for, and when Nadal arrived on the court 45 seconds after Bernardes’ announcement, Shabovalov approached Bernardes and said Nadal should be fined for the delay.
Bernards did not agree, and Shapovalov returned to the baseline and then approached Bernardus again, saying that Nadal was not ready yet. Bernards replied: “You’re not ready to play because you’re coming to talk to me.”
“Are you kidding me?” Shapovalov said as he retreated. “You’re all corrupt.”
Shapovalov, 22, did not receive any code violation for comment, although he could be fined or allowed through the Australian Open after further investigation. Shapovalov later apologized, saying, “I think I was wrong.” Although there were still several seconds on the serve clock, Nadal was ready to add a second game of the second set as he engaged in another exchange with Bernardus. Natal came towards the web. Shapovalov met him there, and after a brief exchange the play resumed.
“This is nothing against Rafa,” Shapovalov said. “Rafa was serving. I was expecting the referee to see Rafa. The referee was looking at me. I did not understand that.”
But Shapovalov did not complain about Nadal, arguing with Bernardus after the fourth set that Nadal, who was briefly examined in court for stomach problems, took an extended break from the court before the final set to extend the sense of the rules. Integrated medical assessment and toilet visit.
Nadal later explained that he began to feel very late in the second set due to hot, humid weather and long breaks from the game. He returned from touring this year after missing for five months due to a chronic foot problem, and then contracted Govt-19 at an exhibition in Abu Dhabi in late December. He is sixth in Melbourne, where he won the title in 2009.
Shapovalov questioned Bernardus for a long time, saying they were waiting for Nadal to return and that he was not allowed to combine the two breaks in the last match. Seven minutes after the end of the fourth set, Nadal served.
When asked if Nadal was a priority at the post-match press conference, Shapovalov replied that “he does it 100 percent” and that there should be boundaries.
“In all the other matches I played, the pace was very fast because the notes were on the clock after every point,” Shapovalov said. “It’s, after the first two sets, he’s been dragged so much after every point that it was an hour and a half. He’s given so much time between sets and all this.
Players will be allowed 25 seconds between points when serving but the chair referees have the option of deciding when to start the shot clock. When returning to service the players are expected to play at the “reasonable speed” of the server, which allows a lot to explain a phrase in the tennis rule book.
“I respect everything Rafa did and I think he’s an incredible player,” Shapovalov said. “But there have to be some boundaries, some rules have been set. As a player it’s very frustrating. You feel like you’re not just playing against the player; you’ve played against the referees, you’re playing against many more. It’s hard. I mean, after the fourth set it’s a big break, this The speed will go away for a reason.
Shapovalov said of stars like Nadal: “They are legends of the game, but it should be equal when you step on the court.”
Bernardus, Brazil’s senior chair umpire, broke Nadal’s time for taking too much time before serving in the fourth set. Bernards and Natal Never agree, And Bernardes was barred from working on Natalie’s tournaments during a cold winter in 2015. But that informal ban soon came to an end.
Nadal denied the allegations in favor of Shapovalov, and said it was customary to take some time to change clothes and equipment after playing a set in such a steam situation.
Nadal said in Spanish about Shapovalov, “I think he was really wrong. If you lose a match like this, you get frustrated. I have a lot of affection for tennis. By no means do I want to convey that I recommend for the mother to be inactive.
Nadal has noticed that in recent seasons the rules have been tightened to make it harder to show support for the elite or any player, due to the advent of electronic line-calling, shot clocks between points and, this season, toilet breaks.
“You have less room now to influence anything,” Nadal said, adding that he was not interested in making a profit in court.
“I believe in court you deserve better treatment than others,” Nadal said. “I didn’t really like it. I didn’t feel like I had it.”
Nadal was mostly far from his best game in the second half of Tuesday’s game. He also had 11 double faults, a large amount by his standards. But he was able to serve better when he needed it most, including coming up with one ace to save a break point in the opening game of the fifth set and saving two more break points in the third game.
“I was honestly, physically devastated, but my service worked well,” Nadal said. “For me, every game I win through my service is a win.”
He had an overall win, and was number one in the semifinals on Friday afternoon. There are two days to recover before facing 7th seed Matteo Bertini or 17th seed Gayle Monfils. Nadal generally likes to play during the day, where conditions are generally quick and help his topspin penetrate the forehand court. But it seemed he would have enjoyed playing in the shade against Shapovalov.
“I’m not 21,” Nadal said wearily in a post-match interview.
But 21 in Melbourne may still be his magic number, where he has only two matches to break the tie.
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