Reuters: Rafa Nadal ran himself to the point of exhaustion in Monday’s U.S. Open final against Novak Djokovic then ran out of answers.
The Spaniard knew his best chance of beating Djokovic was to wear him down, so he chased everything he could to keep him on court as long as possible in the hope his Serbian opponent would run out of gas.
Part of his plan worked. Their final lasted four hours and 10 minutes and by the end, Djokovic was gasping for air and feeling his aches and pains. But so was Nadal. He had run himself ragged by the fourth set and the result was now a foregone conclusion.
He gave it his best shot but it was not good enough. Djokovic won 6-2 6-4 6-7 6-1, leaving Nadal to stand back and applaud as the winner raised the trophy. “It was a tough match, physically, mentally, everything,” Nadal said.
“I fought until the last point. I tried my best at every moment. I am happy with a lot of things, much happier than the previous matches against him.” It was another painful for loss for the Spaniard, who was on top of the world 12 months ago when he beat Djokovic in New York to complete his collection of grand slam titles.
Since then, the Serb has completely overwhelmed Nadal. They have played each other six times this year, all in finals, and the Serbian has won the lot.