NOLE: 39, THE WORLD: 0
1) There’s only so many ways in which you might underline the warped and, it seems, iconoclastic nature of Nole’s streak. What was once simply ‘astonishing’ has now acquired something of the profane. Nothing is to be gained by adding to any of that, other than to say, N-I-C-E.
2) Anyone that denies thinking he wouldn’t be affected to a lesser or greater degree by Saturday’s exertions against Murray is either in denial, or simply basking in the view afforded by hindsight.
3) His level in the first set, in particular, was even higher – if this is possible – than during the semis. Eye-wateringly awesome as that is (and, in its own way, rather chilling), it’s also true that he needed to win this in two.
4) It wasn’t a case of if, but when the effects of the previous day’s exploits would catch up with him. Let there be no illusions that a player as savvy as Nole wasn’t fully cognisant of this.
Or that there wasn’t a premeditated strategy of preventing a third set, which would, quite frankly, have proved disastrous, however poorly Rafa might have been playing. (see ‘Tentative-Rafa trumps Tired-Nole’)
5) Planning such a two set blitz is one thing – it should come as no shock that a player as skilled as Novak is able to execute upon it. Similarly, its not impossible for a world class athlete to pool all his or her (limited) resources into a calculated attempt at playing death-defyingly well up front, knowing full well that it can’t last.
Far better to do that and lose, than to allow yourself to get embroiled in a three setter you can have no hope of winning.