Top Seeded Nadal to Meet Andy Murray in Final Japan Open 2011

Nadal to Meet Murray

Partai final Rakuten Japan Open Tennis Championships 2011 mempertemukan dua petenis unggulan kejuaraan tersebut yaitu Rafael Nadal – unggulan pertama dan Andy Murray – unggulan kedua. Kedua pemain yang sudah memastikan tempat di Barclays ATP World Tour Finals tahun ini tanpa kesulitan mengungguli lawan-lawan mereka di semi final yang digelar pada 8 Oktober 2011.

Bermain pada pertandingan pertama, Rafael Nadal petenis no. 2 dunia dengan mudah menepis harapan petenis Amerika Serikat peringkat 8 dunia Mardy Fish dengan dua set langsung 7-5 dan 6-1. Set pertama ditandai dengan reli-reli panjang, namun selama pertandingan berlangsung Nadal mengambil alih dan menerapkan permainan dengan servis keras dan pukulan ground stroke yang tajam. Juara bertahan ini membutuhkan waktu 1 jam 35 menit untuk mengakhiri perlawanan Fish dan memastikan tempat di final.

“I think it will be a very difficult match, he is doing very well winning last week in Bangkok and now into another final,” said Nadal. “I will have to play my best tennis to have any chance; it’s a big challenge playing against him.”

“I thought Rafa played very well today,” said Fish. “The first set was pretty high quality and could have gone either way, but he picked up his game and the second set got away from me real quickly. The goal is to make London at the end of the year and I’ll take a semi-final appearance here. I’m taking the momentum I had from the summer and putting points on the board hopefully, week after week.”

Pada pertandingan semi final kedua berhadapan pemain unggulan lainnya yaitu Andy Murray unggulan kedua dengan David Ferrer unggulan ketiga. Murray yang minggu lalu menjuarai Thailand Open 2011, tidak menemui banyak kesulitan dalam menyelesaikan perlawanan petenis nomor 5 dunia dengan 6-2 dan 6-3. Murray hanya membutuhkan waktu 81 menit untuk memastikan langkahnya ke final untuk menantang juara bertahan sekaligus unggulan utama Rafael Nadal.

“I played great from start to finish,” said Murray. “It was always going to be a tough match, but I played smart and I was hitting the ball very deep from the back of the court, so it was a very good performance.”

“You win more matches and you get more confidence,” said Ferrer, building on the positives of his week. “I’m happy with the tournament, not today, but I won three matches and this is important for my game.”

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