MADRID, November 13 (.) –
The Spanish tennis player Rafa Nadal yielded (7-6(3), 6-1) to the American Taylor Fritz this Sunday in his debut at the ATP Finals that take place in Turin (Italy), unable to disturb his motivated rival and forced now to the epic to reach the semifinals.
The Spaniard, who is looking to win the Masters Cup for the first time, had a bad start in the last round of the year. The start was measured and, when he took a run on his serve, he failed in the tie-break of the first set. Fritz showed nerves of steel and zero pressure to take down the Green Group favorite at the Pala Alpitour.
Now, Nadal will face a Felix Auger-Aliassime on Tuesday on the second day who also lost this Sunday against the Norwegian
Casper Ruud (7-6(4), 6-4), with no room for error if he wants to be in the matchups. The Spaniard arrived in Turin with doubts about the lack of games in the last five months, but with time to work.
This is how he showed himself in the preview, optimistic with his options, but at the beginning he started in a low profile. Fritz did not suffer with his serve, nor did he give options with much first, while he began to have options to break the Spaniard. Nadal saved them in the third game and, above all, in the seventh, but the American did not flinch.
In sudden death, which began with a double fault from the world number two, the Yankee confirmed his dominance with great confidence. With two balls to the line he closed his partial victory and, in the second set, he took advantage of the first ‘break’ ball he had (3-1) to bring him closer to his second victory over Nadal this year. The champion of 22 ‘big’, crestfallen, saw no response to a very plugged-in rookie.
The American, for the first time in the event that brings together the eight best of the year, still wanted more and broke Nadal again for 5-1 that he later sealed with victory. The Spaniard will have to do the most difficult yet, something that the champion of Australia and Roland Garros already achieved in 2022, but in an elusive scenario like no other in his career.