Felix Auger-Aliassime beat Rafael Nadal 6-3 6-4 in a green group match of the ATP Finals in Turin on Tuesday. The match lasted around two hours as the 22-year-old Canadian registered his first ever win against the 36-year-old Spaniard.
Keys to Felix Auger-Aliassime’s win over Rafael Nadal at the ATP Finals
#1. Auger-Aliassime’s powerful serve and forehand helped him win the first set:
Auger-Aliassime exhibited a lot of power in his first serve and forehand to make things difficult for Nadal in the first set. There were a lot of unreturned first serves as Nadal found it difficult to deal with the Canadian’s ferocious power.
Auger-Aliassime got the vital break of serve in the eighth game of the set and then served it out. Auger-Aliassime kept serving well under pressure and managed to save a few break points. Nadal also supplied him with enough short balls for the latter to dispatch them with his forehand.
#2. Nadal adjusted his court position in the second set, but could not break Auger-Aliassime:
Nadal adjusted his court position while returning by standing deeper in the second set. As a result, the ratio of unreturned serves decreased, but the Spaniard still found it impossible to break the Canadian.
Auger-Aliassime, meanwhile, managed to get yet another vital break and never lost his serve. Nadal tried to put pressure on the Canadian’s backhand, but the latter kept hitting backhand slices to take the pace off the ball.
He also kept hitting his forehand with great power and finished with 29 winners, including 15 aces in the match, while Nadal could hit only 12. The Canadian also won 81% of the points on his first serve against Nadal’s 72%. Although Nadal put pressure on his second serve, thereby making him win only 40% of the points on it, the Canadian did just about enough in the end.
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