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The Coach: Nadal must be aggressive to beat Thiem

10 Juin 2018

A tired Del Potro looked like he could not take any more punishment when a Nadal backhand victor gave him a break to love in the first game of the third set.

Brett: I don't know if Rafael Nadal would've lost to Diego Schwartzman if there wasn't the delay, but the delay certainly didn't hurt the ten-time Roland Garros champion. Both men are at stages in their career that have previously been points of great decline for the greats who came before them.

He will face Rafael Nadal in the semi-final.

Spaniard Nadal eventually claimed the set with a late break of his own before going on to dominate the rest of the contest, his 6-4 6-1 6-2 victory setting up a showdown with Dominic Thiem for the title on Sunday. Thiem beat Marco Cecchinato 7-5, 7-6, 6-1 in his semifinal matchup.

However, to get his hands on La Coupe des Mousquetaires, Thiem will have to defeat the most formidable player in the tournament's history - 10-time champion Nadal. "I have a plan and".

"To beat him on clay, I would say the only chance for any player now is to be really aggressive". "I just enjoy the fact that I am here again". "Gave me time for reflection, to calm my nerves and to see how I needed to change things". If he wins the game, OK. But I know how to play against him.

"I hope that I'm going to have great successes".

But the Spaniard was impressive on Friday, finishing with 35 winners and 19 unforced errors to Del Potro's analysis of 20 and 32.

"He's an fantastic player", Nadal said of Thiem.

When they returned to the court, Nadal used a burst of three straight games - and 13 of 15 points - to close in on taking the second set.

"It was a good second and third set for me, and a good hold in the first".

"I feel the pressure every day, but not here". It is his best result at Roland Garros since 2009 when he also made the semi-finals losing to Roger Federer in five sets.

Thiem's ability to bully opponents from the baseline was on display in his 6-4, 6-2, 6-1 victory over No. 2 seed Alexander Zverev in the quarter-finals. I mean, not many players can beat him on clay.

Thiem was one of Nadal's victims during his 2017 French Open campaign, where the Austrian lost 6-3, 6-4, 6-0.

Women's world No. 1 Simona Halep will chase her first Grand Slam title in Saturday's final against U.S. Open titleholder Sloane Stephens. He is 10-0 in French Open finals and 77-0 at the tournament overall when he wins the first set, so getting a jump on him early - a tactic far easier to write about than to execute - would seem to be a fairly obvious strategy.

Thiem went for the jugular in the third set and after racing to a 4-0 lead in double quick, he finished off the job to reach his first Grand Slam final.

"When I missed that volley it wasn't a very nice feeling".

Thiem weathered three set points for Cecchinato, at 7-6, 9-8 and 10-9.

At long last, Thiem converted his fifth set point when Cecchinato sent a forehand long.

"That was definitely the key to the match", Cecchinato said.

"After that, my level dropped".

Robin Soderling, who famously inflicted Nadal's first defeat at the French Open in 2009, insists Thiem has to take the initiative from the start.

Baez defeated Thiago Seyboth Wild of Brazil 6-2, 6-2, while Tseng advanced past second-seeded Sebastian Korda of the United States 6-2, 7-5 in the semifinals.

The Coach: Nadal must be aggressive to beat Thiem