Nadal suffers before a great Pella, but reaches his 14th semifinal

Rafa Nadal rallied and won in the playoff a first set that was put uphill (1-4 and 5-6) and beat Pella in the second. He will face the Italian Fognini.


Rafa Nadal threw defense and kickback to overcome with much effort the game and the desire of Guido Pella, who probably made one of the best games of his career and still was not able to overcome the king of the land in Montecarlo, a square in which he has triumphed 11 times and where he will play the semifinals for the 14th time in 16 appearances. The Spaniard overcame a first set that was very uphill, first with a 4-1 against and then with 6-5 and serve for the Argentine, and imposed his rhythm in a second part also very worked: 7-6 ( 1) and 6-3 in two hours and 20 minutes. He did not fail as Djokovic against Medvedev and will face this Saturday (not before 15:30, # Vamos) to the Italian Fognini (11-3 for the Spanish in the particular balance) that he could with the Croatian Coric (1-6, 6-3 and 6-2) .

Pella, who had already played four tournaments on the ground with good results (champion in Sao Paulo, finalist in Córdoba and semifinalist in Buenos Aires), dreamed of achieving a feat that only three players have achieved in Monaco: win to Nadal. He did in 2003 his compatriot Guillermo Coria, then top-10 world, Djokovic in 2013 and 2015 and Ferrer in 2014, three cracks. That was how difficult it was for the company that was trying to bring the Bahía Blanca to a good port. The number two in the world started cold, without energy and failure (31 errors not forced at the end), but where another had thrown the towel, with that 4-1, he fought and won four games in a row. He looked for the reverse of his rival, lefty like him, and counterattacked with all his repertoire. That's how spectacular blows were seen. Afterwards, Pella broke his serve for the fourth time and not for that. Rafa equaled and swept in the tiebreaker (7-1) .

The Argentinian was not depressed and he continued to fight with success, without letting his opponent, already grown, overwhelm him. However, he suffered the genius and he increased the winning shots of Manacor (finished with 35), which put a 5-1 demolition. Then he lowered the intensity and Pella broke him again, but the next turn yielded with a double fault his serve and the game. It was a nice show with brilliant moments on both sides and with the demonstration that in order to win the king of clay in his element, something more than game is needed, maybe almost supernatural. To finish, a data: Nadal reaches semifinals in a streak of 25 straight sets without losing in Montecarlo.



Photos from as.com

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