Tennis without Nadal

That is why Davidovich's presence in the round of 16 at the US Open, aged 21, is so important. A hopeful spurt. It is not Nadal nor will it be. But cheer.


Pablo Carreño and Alejandro Davidovich face Novak Djokovic and Alexander Zverev, numbers one and four of the tournament, respectively, in the round of 16 this Sunday. If they lose their matches, something predictable against two higher caliber rivals, Spain will be left without individual representation at the US Open, after Roberto Bautista, who started as eighth favorite in the box, lost this Saturday against the forecast against Vasek Pospisil in five sets . Garbiñe Muguruza was already out on Thursday, it only lasted two sets. It is not necessary to throw the hands to the head, and less with two survivors in battle. Must play. We are simply facing an X-ray of Spanish tennis in a Grand Slam without its reference in recent years: Rafa Nadal ... And without David Ferrer, now retired.

Many times we wonder about life without Nadal. Nobody expects a clone, because Rafa is a legend. Not from Spain, but from the World. Not from today, but from History. The witness appeared in women's tennis, with Muguruza and his two greats: a Roland Garros and a Wimbledon. But it was soon found that Garbiñe is something else, specific flashes on an uneven path. The Spanish-Venezuelan had a good 2020, without getting out of the quarterfinals and with a final in Australia, but the confinement did not sit well with her. You have to give it that margin. Given this scenario, Bautista was the candidate, a man who flirts with the top-10 and who had Djokovic on the ropes in Cincinnati. But in a Grand Slam there are always matches that get tangled up. Lost opportunity. For this reason, Davidovich's presence in this phase is so important. Since Nadal in 2008, no Spaniard reached the eighth at age 21. Carlos Alcaraz appears on another horizon, but Álex is the closest succession. A hopeful stream of fresh air. That he is not Nadal nor will he be. But cheer.

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