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Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Rafael Nadal's Injury Timeouts-Strategy or Real?

There has been a lot of talk going on about Rafael Nadal’s contentious time delaying tactics that are being employed by him during the matches to ruffle his opponents.

Let’s look back at a few timeouts taken by Nadal during important matches:

1) Finals at Monte-Carlo, 2008- Federer was leading 5-2 in the first set and Nadal calls for a timeout. When treatment was over, Nadal played brilliantly to defeat Federer. (This is of importance as Fed then lost French Open and then Wimbledon in the epic match to Nadal)

2) Finals at Hamburg, 2008: A time break, which lasted for 6 minutes, was called by Nadal for thigh massage, just before Federer was going to serve for the set. Obvious result: Federer lost his own serve and eventually the match.

3) Wimbledon 2008: It is well known to the world about the time taken by Nadal/Djokovic between serves. In the epic final Nadal, on an average, took around 30 seconds (maximum went to around 50 seconds) between his serves against Federer who took on an average 20 seconds.(Rule was for 25 seconds)

4) Wimbledon 2010: Against Philipp Petzschner, he called his trainer numerous times on the court. Nadal won, 6-4, 4-6, 6-7 (5), 6-2, 6-3. Petzschner said he did not notice a difference in Nadal’s movements before and after the timeouts.

5) Wimbledon 2011: Nadal calls for a timeout at 6-6 in the first set and goes on to win the match against Del Potro.

After the match yesterday, it was told that he would need a MRI to determine whether he can play in Quarter Finals. Was this statement a strategy to calm the outside world down or was it actually an injury; only Nadal can tell. But one thing is for sure, we cannot undermine the determination of this player. Nadal's sportsmanship can be a question but his records are unbelievable and will go down as one of the greatest in tennis history.


  1. Agree. He is a cheat and he is also a great player.

  2. whatever it is Rafa does it better under pressure. Other players just collapse and no fighting spirit this man has a great mental ability to fight and raise his game to the highest level almost defeat. Even J.Mac commented with Rafa being injured and not to continue to play is a waste of a very talented player.

  3. He's not a cheat. He's not breaking the rules... and this blog is true then... He's a complete player and uses every resource to beat his opponents. It's shame on them because they're weak and they let those things influence their games...

  4. Tell me when he didn't cheat and I won't believe you.... Compare Federer's reputation against Nadal's and you'll find the answer without dispute

  5. And of course, the TO in the French Open final against Federer this year...

  6. I do think if you're going to say there's been "a lot of talk" about Nadal's possible cheating you have to provide a few links to prove it!
    However, I DO think Nadal is a cheat, or at least indulges in strategic gamesmanship outside the rules, and that umpires let him get away with it. Worse, TV commentators such as McEnroe & co. almost always defend him. If an umpire ever issues a warning for a time violation, it's always the "wrong time" to issue the warning.
    I wish more players would confront him on court about it, but unfortunately, they don't. Right now he gets a free ride in the press for the most part, but everything comes to an end. When Nadal starts to slip as a player, then the hacks will go after him. But not while he's King....

  7. @apeeksha.. Do you see anyone beating Nadal this year ? With tactics like these its going to be impossible !!

  8. @ jaishankar:I think the main contender is out now. So my next hope is Djoko and who knows if Murray can play miraculous tennis, we might have a player who can defeat Nadal in Wimbledon. But I have to say with fed out, the balance has shifted in his favor now to win the title. Regarding tactics, I believe that his sportsmanship will always be a blot in his otherwise great career overall.

  9. I invite you to read my article at

  10. Dear Apeksha and all,

    we all know RAFA has these tactics..which are all if you are a champion then you should be champion in all respect, whatever your opponent offer you should overcome that..champions dont give any reasons..all these hypes of cheat and stuff is by media/social sites not by fedex/djoko/murray..
    so point is you cant win 10 major doing all should have guts to become a champion

  11. I agree that you cannot win 10 grandslams by all this:Thats y i wrote "But one thing is for sure, we cannot undermine the determination of this player. Nadal's sportsmanship can be a question but his records are unbelievable and will go down as one of the greatest in tennis history". So you are bang on when u say that u need guts and probably in that area, there is no one better than Nadal at present. He gives his 100 percent till his last point.And his records speaks for himself.

  12. This cartoon says it all!:


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