Monday, 7 June 2010

Roland Garros: Conflict Resolution

Postmodernity's gonna have to wait then….

Nadal d. Soderling 6-4 6-2 6-4

And that’s fine by me.

I have a rather heftier post in the works that touches, amongst other things, on why I think Big Rob seized up so. Not dissimilar to Sammy the day before.

For now I intend to revel in Rafa’s “full circle” (© 2Hander 2010) return to form – a win I felt he needed just as much as Federer needed Wimbledon last year.

It’s no secret how conflicted I was about all this.

I’ve been backing Big Rob since he upset Nadal last year. His wins here over these two years are no fluke. He brings something a little different to the table – in a way only a walking scorched earth policy can.

Had he come through yesterday he would have beaten the best-ever-on-clay and the best-ever-period, at the same event...picking up, almost as an unintended side-effect, his first Slam title. As it is, he'll have to console himself with having taken out one, only to go out to the other in a straight sets final, for two years running - an odd sort of symmetry.

Results like that usually imply some sort of cult status.

Witnessing such a win may perhaps have proved more exhilarating - it would, however, also have proved more devastating seeing Nadal lose.

Unspeakably subjective I know. But it’s the only way I see to resolving this conflict.

I might have felt differently if Robin lost it having taken it to 16-15 in the fifth, or had Nadal not been able to perform.

But that’s not the way it played out.

Nadal outperformed himself. I’ve not seen him defend that well since 2008. At one point in the third set he was serving at 95%.

All three Masters events and Roland Garros - a staggering clean sweep of the clay court season in which he dropped only two sets (take a bow Ernie Gulbis and Nico Almagro).

And already, within hours of the win, he was on the phone to the director of Queens requesting a practice court for today and entry to the doubles draw.

Try. Just try and refuse him.

(Photo: Getty)

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