Nadal survives bad day at office

Spain’s Rafael Nadal returns to Daniel Brands of Germany during their French Open first round match at Roland Garros in Paris on

Spain’s Rafael Nadal returns to Daniel Brands of Germany during their French Open first round match at Roland Garros in Paris on

All seemed normal as Rafael Nadal walked on to Chatrier Court to begin his pursuit of an eighth French Open title but Germany’s Daniel Brands ensured it was no regular Monday at the office for the defending champion who survived a huge scare.

Nadal, as expected, took his place in the second round but his 4-6, 7-6, 6-4, 6-3 win over the inspired German, who had never won a main draw match at Roland Garros was fraught with danger as he flirted with the unthinkable.
After a relatively thrill-free opening day on Sunday, fans flocked to the brick dust courts beside the Bois de Boulogne to feast their eyes on a line-up loaded with big names.
Former women’s champion Li Na began with a grafting 6-3, 6-4 first round win against Spain’s Anabel Medina Garrigues while home fans dreaming of a first French men’s champion here since 1983 cheered loudly as Jo-Wilfried Tsonga turned on the style.
Russian powerhouse Maria Sharapova was set to turn up the volume later as she begins the defence of her title. However, it was claycourt king Nadal’s struggle that created the buzz around the crowds thronging the grounds.
The 26-year-old, looking to become the first man in history to win the same Grand Slam eight times, has been unstoppable in the build-up to the tournament he has dominated since winning the title as a teenager in 2005.
Five titles on clay since returning to the Tour after a seven-month injury lay-off, and the incredible statistic of a solitary defeat in his previous 53 French Open matches, should have made his first-round clash with Brands a formality.
Looking a sluggish and struggling to cope with the punishing, flat-hitting of 59th ranked Brands, Nadal double-faulted on a break point at 4-4 in first set and Brands seized his chance, claiming the first set with a forehand missile.
With the capacity crowd glued to the action, Brands fired down two huge winners to take a 3-0 lead but just when the alarm bells began to ring loudly in the Nadal camp, the Mallorcan was let off the hook.
A Brands backhand sliced low into the net gave Nadal a new lease of life and the Spaniard won seven of the final eight points in the tiebreak to level the match.
“He was playing unbelievable tennis and I was just trying to find my game and resist his great shots and I’m very happy to be through,” a relieved Nadal said.
While Nadal was toiling, sixth seed Tsonga was entertaining the crowd out on Suzanne Lenglen court, outclassing Slovenia’s Aljaz Bedene 6-2, 6-2, 6-3.
China’s 2011 champion Li made light of poor head-to-head record against Medina Garrigues to move through. Fourth seed Agnieszka Radwanska, playing despite a painful shoulder, thrashed Israel’s Shahar Peer 6-1, 6-1, while former world no. 1 Caroline Wozniacki ended a dreadful recent run of first-round defeats to beat Britain’s Laura Robson 6-3, 6-2.

Post new comment

<form action="/comment/reply/234369" accept-charset="UTF-8" method="post" id="comment-form"> <div><div class="form-item" id="edit-name-wrapper"> <label for="edit-name">Your name: <span class="form-required" title="This field is required.">*</span></label> <input type="text" maxlength="60" name="name" id="edit-name" size="30" value="Reader" class="form-text required" /> </div> <div class="form-item" id="edit-mail-wrapper"> <label for="edit-mail">E-Mail Address: <span class="form-required" title="This field is required.">*</span></label> <input type="text" maxlength="64" name="mail" id="edit-mail" size="30" value="" class="form-text required" /> <div class="description">The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.</div> </div> <div class="form-item" id="edit-comment-wrapper"> <label for="edit-comment">Comment: <span class="form-required" title="This field is required.">*</span></label> <textarea cols="60" rows="15" name="comment" id="edit-comment" class="form-textarea resizable required"></textarea> </div> <fieldset class=" collapsible collapsed"><legend>Input format</legend><div class="form-item" id="edit-format-1-wrapper"> <label class="option" for="edit-format-1"><input type="radio" id="edit-format-1" name="format" value="1" class="form-radio" /> Filtered HTML</label> <div class="description"><ul class="tips"><li>Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.</li><li>Allowed HTML tags: &lt;a&gt; &lt;em&gt; &lt;strong&gt; &lt;cite&gt; &lt;code&gt; &lt;ul&gt; &lt;ol&gt; &lt;li&gt; &lt;dl&gt; &lt;dt&gt; &lt;dd&gt;</li><li>Lines and paragraphs break automatically.</li></ul></div> </div> <div class="form-item" id="edit-format-2-wrapper"> <label class="option" for="edit-format-2"><input type="radio" id="edit-format-2" name="format" value="2" checked="checked" class="form-radio" /> Full HTML</label> <div class="description"><ul class="tips"><li>Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.</li><li>Lines and paragraphs break automatically.</li></ul></div> </div> </fieldset> <input type="hidden" name="form_build_id" id="form-792ce58e0318b198d25dfa5cfee13b37" value="form-792ce58e0318b198d25dfa5cfee13b37" /> <input type="hidden" name="form_id" id="edit-comment-form" value="comment_form" /> <fieldset class="captcha"><legend>CAPTCHA</legend><div class="description">This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.</div><input type="hidden" name="captcha_sid" id="edit-captcha-sid" value="61528103" /> <input type="hidden" name="captcha_response" id="edit-captcha-response" value="NLPCaptcha" /> <div class="form-item"> <div id="nlpcaptcha_ajax_api_container"><script type="text/javascript"> var NLPOptions = {key:'c4823cf77a2526b0fba265e2af75c1b5'};</script><script type="text/javascript" src="http://call.nlpcaptcha.in/js/captcha.js" ></script></div> </div> </fieldset> <span class="btn-left"><span class="btn-right"><input type="submit" name="op" id="edit-submit" value="Save" class="form-submit" /></span></span> </div></form>

No Articles Found

No Articles Found

No Articles Found

I want to begin with a little story that was told to me by a leading executive at Aptech. He was exercising in a gym with a lot of younger people.

Shekhar Kapur’s Bandit Queen didn’t make the cut. Neither did Shaji Karun’s Piravi, which bagged 31 international awards.