Rafael Nadal took a break after an early loss at the US Open, dealt with his abdominal injury and stayed off the court for two months. Nadal returned to action at the Paris Masters, looking for valuable points at world no.
1 battle Rafa faced Tommy Paul in the second round and suffered a 3-6, 7-6, 6-1 loss in two hours and 32 minutes. It was Nadal’s worst performance in the final Masters 1000 event of the season, not feeling well and disappearing from the court in the decider.
Rafa admitted that he had stomach problems during the match, lost energy and threw up after the match! Despite a solid start, the Spaniard failed to seal the deal in straight sets and had nothing left in the tank in the decider.
He seemed exhausted and slow, losing rhythm in his serve and movement and allowing the opponent to break him three times.
Rafael Nadal was ill during his Paris Masters match.
Paul served at 57% but experienced three breaks to find himself in a challenging position.
The American converted 42% of return points on five breaks that took him to the finish line and into the last 16. Tommy had 29 winners and 27 unforced errors, tamed his shots very well and attacked the net. He took advantage of Rafa’s 35 unforced errors and forced a decider, where it was all about him.
Paul played very well at net and built the lead at the shorter range of up to four strokes, thanks to his aggressive approach. Picking up a good pace after recovering the break, Tommy claimed the second set tie break 7-4 after forcing Rafa’s error.
Nadal hit a routine forehand to lose serve early in the final set and missed his chance in the fourth game. The Spaniard made a volleying error in game five to lose serve, playing without energy or momentum. Paul delivered his third break at 5-1 and emerged on top with a volley winner for the best victory of his career.
“I didn’t run for a long time ahead of Paris and I had a slight stomach problem. I felt bad in the third set and threw up after the match. I didn’t say anything when we finished because there was no point.” I was sick one day and then I was able to train normally,” Rafael Nadal said.