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Men's singles fourth round result:

M YOUZHNY (Rus) 17 v R NADAL (Spa) 2

3-6 3-6 1-6

LATEST ACTION (all times BST)

606: DEBATE
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By Alistair Watkins at Wimbledon

THIRD SET

Youzhny 1-6 Nadal
That's it. Youzhny saves one match point but Nadal wins the next point and victory is his. How's the knee now? Next up Andy Murray? Tom Fordyce is covering the British number one's match on Centre Court now.

Youzhny 1-5 Nadal
Youzhny has the chance to avoid the dreaded bagel. But that small crumb of comfort is almost denied as Rafa puts together a superb rally, finished with a simple volley, to set up match point. He misses it, firing into the net, and Youzhny recovers to win the game. He looks to the heavens in relief, Nadal looks furious.

"Nadal gets better every year. He keeps working so hard on his game and gets better in every department."
Greg Rusedski in the BBC commentary box

Youzhny 0-5 Nadal
Whack, whack, whack, double fault, whack. It's ridiculously one-sided now. There's no hope for Youzhny - and Nadal isn't even playing at his best.

Youzhny 0-4 Nadal
Youzhny has lost 51% of points on his serve - four of them in this very short game. Nadal marches closer to another emphatic victory.

Youzhny 0-3 Nadal
Becoming a mere formality now. Will it be a doughnut for Rafa? Some kind of revenge after his humiliating defeat against Youzhny in January.

Youzhny 0-2 Nadal
Youzhny volleys like Sampras in his prime but then decides to leave a Nadal top-spinner which drops just in, when another thumping volley would have won the game. He just can't seem to put two points together in a row. Deuce before you know it. Rafa steps forward on the second serve but then miscues a passing shot. Youzhny vents his frustration after letting a lob go over him to hand Nadal break point. More deuces follow. More errors too. Finally Nadal returns a serve with interest and then Youzhny blasts a high and easy overhead volley about 10 yards out. The longest game so far of the match.

Youzhny 0-1 Nadal
Youzhny takes aim and hits a winner with a flourishing forehand, Nadal whacks a ball out, and suddenly Youzhny has an opening. But a poor drop-shot flops into the net and two break points disappear in a flash. Nadal bangs his serve down, fires a cross-court backhand winner that defies belief and wins the game.

SECOND SET

Youzhny 3-6 Nadal
With the set there to be won, Nadal ups his game and beats Youzhny at the net with a volley and then, next point, with a bashing backhand down the line. Youzhny finds an extra gear to save two set points, the second coming after a great rally which saw Nadal's athleticism tested to the max. But it's all in vain as Nadal wins the set. Wait a minute, has he? Youzhny challenges the line-call... no, it's out.

Youzhny 3-5 Nadal
Nadal puts Youzhny in his place with a controlled service game. He's not having to play that well but is getting through the games quickly enough.

Youzhny 3-4 Nadal
A big booming ace down the middle gives Youzhny the game and he runs back to his chair with a visible spring in his step. He's used to long matches, having won in five sets in his last two matches, so maybe he's just getting into his stride.

Youzhny 2-4 Nadal
Nadal scurries around the court to retrieve a drop-shot and then a lob before trying to lob Youzhny back with an ambitious/desperate shot played between his legs. A second ace comes as Nadal wins the game.

"Don't try that at home people, it can be very dangerous to your health," says BBC Sport commentator Greg Rusedski.

Youzhny 2-3 Nadal
Youzhny comes into the net again and hits a winner. That's more like it. But will he keep doing it?

"Why isn't youzhny exploiting nadal's injury? Surely youzhny should be doing better?
louise from st albans via text on 81111

Youzhny 1-3 Nadal
Youzhny has never been past the fourth round here - this is his fifth attempt to reach the last eight - and it doesn't look like he's going to break his run.

Youzhny 1-2 Nadal
A third double-fault from Youzhny but he holds serve.

Youzhny 0-2 Nadal
Nadal hits his first ace, almost has a second, and wins the game without a proper rally. Too easy, even on one fit leg.

Youzhny 0-1 Nadal
Some firepower from Youzhny but not the accuracy. Nadal gets an early break and looks better and better, while Youzhny seems very average.

"Nadal's in a lot of pain but is disguising it so well."
Greg Rusedski in the BBC commentary box

FIRST SET

Youzhny 3-6 Nadal
Youzhny comes into the net for the first time and it pays off with an overhead smash. It's a crowd-pleasing shot. Why not try it again? There's not enough volleying for my liking. Spoke to soon though. The best shot of the match so far sees Nadal blast a double-handed backhander past Youzhny, who is caught stranded at the net. That's the first set.

Youzhny 3-5 Nadal
Youzhny hasn't got going yet. He has a revered backhand but hasn't found his range and Nadal soon has a set point. Some big hits out there - both players are emitting grunts on their biggest strokes. Rafa has another set point but some nifty serving helps Youzhny fight back to keep the set alive.

Youzhny 2-5 Nadal
Rafa's biceps are starting to glisten in the warm sunshine. He holds serve with ease.

Youzhny 2-4 Nadal
A slight hop from Nadal after he hits a forehand wide of the trams, but next rally he sprints to the net to hit a winner and then gets half a chance to unwind his booming forehand and ends a long rally to break serve for a second time.

Youzhny 2-3 Nadal
Youzhny wins three points in a row to set up a chance to break back. A wild forehand goes flying out of court and Youzhny wins the game. Not used to seeing so many errors from Nadal.

Youzhny 1-3 Nadal
First decent rally sees Nadal hit the ball with increasing power and devilish accuracy. Not looking hurt there. Youzhny tries a drop-shot to test Nadal's knee but gets it wrong and hands Nadal three break points. The Russian saves two but then whacks a forehand into the net.

Youzhny 1-2 Nadal
Nadal is limping, he looks uncomfortable, but wins the game without any problems.

Youzhny 1-1 Nadal
Youzhny struggles with his serve but, at 40-30, Rafa calls for the trainer after slipping at the back of the court and tweaking his right knee while stretching to reach a groundstroke. Being Nadal, he tries to get to the net to continue the rally but ends up limping away. He retreats to his chair and waits for the trainer.

It's serious. The doctor has joined the trainer in treating Nadal. Boy, does Rafa look mean and moody. Andy Murray meets the winner of this match in the quarter-finals if he can beat Richard Gasquet later on Centre Court.

"The draw would be wide open if Nadal were to go out here. The guys in his side of the draw will be hoping he doesn't carry on but the tournament needs him, he's so important to the championships."
Greg Rusedski in BBC commentary box

Big roars from the Court One crowd as Nadal returns. One good serve sees Youzhny take the game.

Youzhny 0-1 Nadal
Easy enough first game for the Spaniard. Even featured a serve and volley.

1525: Rafa has bits of strapping around both knees. This grass must be getting hard. Some bright red Spanish football shirts in the crowd. One or two hangovers too, I bet.

1515: Good afternoon. After Roger's win and before Andy starts, here's Rafa. No doubt all pumped up after Spain's victory last night. He'll need to be too. He's played the Russian 10 times and has won six and lost four - with the last match going Youzhny's way with a stunning 6-0 6-1 thrashing on the hard-courts of Chennai in January.



see also
Murray aims to break new ground
29 Jun 08 |  Tennis


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