What a final. It really was a great match. From a position of power at two sets and break, Rafa gave Medvedev a sniff and almost paid for it. Daniil once again would just not go away. How on earth could he possibly come back from two sets and a break? Yet there we were in a decider with Medvedev having breakpoints to kick-on. Unreal!
For two sets I don’t think Medvedev was playing particularly poorly but Rafa was just Rafa and won the big points. The moment in the third set when Medvedev started taking the ball earlier and throwing total caution to the wind it became very, very interesting. To play to that level against anyone is incredible, to play to that level against Rafa is out of this world. It was pure class to witness.
Rafa even looked edgier out of the two but once again he found that way to hang in there and then take advantage when his opponents level drops for a game or two. He just does not let up at all. He is pretty much there from start to finish. When does Rafa really ‘check out’ of a set or even a game for that matter? Barely a point! Medvedev gave it one last throw of the dice and almost managed to claw it back to 5/5 from 5/2 double break, but Nadal just about held on. Incredible fight from the pair of them. A really top final to watch.
Rafa moves to within one of Federer on the Grand Slam list, with 19. An awesome achievement. Could we see him overtaking Federer next season? I would have thought Rafa fans would expect to see him at least level by September, an which way you look at it. Can Federer respond is the bigger question?
For Daniil, we have a player that took on the NYC crowd and basically won. His embrace with Rafa at the end and speech were different gear and the crowd showed more than their appreciation last night. He has been great value, especially the last couple of weeks but his form has deserved this. It deserved even more in truth and it would have been, had it not been for Nadal. Taking everything into consideration, I think he would have beaten anyone else last night.
Andy Del Potro