Originally Posted by MWM
That was my reaction during the match, too. I missed most of the first 2 sets, but Nole was cruising in the 3rd, dictating the play, and looked like he had control of the match. The all of a sudden he starts hitting inexplicable errors.....bad ones. This wasn't Rafa forcing him to make errors, but routine shots were going into the net or flying 3 feet long. It's almost like he choked.
The Rafa started playing his game in the 4th set and it was over. I was disappointed, not because I was pulling for Nole over Nadal, but because it seemed like he was handing the match to Nadal as opposed to making him earn it. Nadal doesn't need help. But Nadal wasn't doing all that much during that stretch of about 6 games where the match turned and was decided. It went from a classic match with the highest quality tennis to sloppy and lopsided.
I wonder if the marathon semi for Nole against Wawrinka didn't come back to haunt him. He may have ran out of gas.
He probably ran out of gas a bit. That's an extra large problem against Nadal, not only because you need to hit extra winners but because Rafa's crazy topspin makes it so easy to mi**** a ball. The kick on Rafa's shots is ridiculous. Mostly I think the difference was Rafa was able to maintain a generally superhuman level of play while Djokovic was only intermittently superhuman.
These guys are so good that the moment you slip even a little bit, you start to lose badly.