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Rafael Nadal v Mardy Fish as it happened

LIVE TEXT COMMENTARY (all times GMT)

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By Saj Chowdhury

2335: Well, that's that. The match lasted two hours and 55 minutes and included a lengthy toilet break, but Nadal has his first victory following a five-week break. It's the turn of Britain's Andy Murray and world number one Novak Djokovic at the o2 on Monday. There will be live and comprehensive coverage on the BBC. Thanks for your time.

Rafael Nadal on his victory: "It was a very important victory. Sorry for the toilet break (second game of third set) but I had a terrible stomach."

The match is over
RAFAEL NADAL BEATS MARDY FISH AT THE ATP WORLD TOUR FINALS

Nadal 6-2 3-6 7-6 (7-3) Fish
Nadal gets an early mini-break after Fish finds the net. The world number two holds his serves to move into a 4-1 lead. Nadal has another match-point at 6-3. Fish to serve. His backhand smash at the net goes into the net. Match over - Nadal wins.
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Love is in the air
*Nadal 6-2 3-6 6-6 Fish
Fish has his sights set on the tie-break - he wins his service game to love.
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Nadal 6-2 3-6 6-5 Fish*
Nadal holds, although he's still grimacing. The pressure is back on Fish.
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*Nadal 6-2 3-6 5-5 Fish
First blood to Nadal but Fish levels at 15-15. Nadal's double hander moves him to 30-15 on Fish's serve. Nadal fails to deliver with the court at his mercy - it's 30-30. A mishit by Fish gives Nadal match-point. Nadal hits long. Fish saves. Nadal then carves up another match-point following a Fish misjudgement. The American saves again and finally holds.
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Twitter
emma_gorton on Twitter: "At the o2 loving the umpire, great darts calling tonight! #bbctennis"

Nadal 6-2 3-6 5-4 Fish*
Nadal is serving a mixed bag here. It's deuce following a double fault. He hangs on. Fish must hold serve.
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*Nadal 6-2 3-6 4-4 Fish
I have to say the standard has been poor - both players look like they need a couple more matches to get back to full fitness. Fish holds. Tie-break?
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Hawkeye
Nadal 6-2 3-6 4-3 Fish*
Fish challenges - Fish fails. But he has another break point thanks to a forehand return down the line. Nadal saves following a brilliant first serve. Fish gallops again but after sending a return long. Maybe you don't just gallop out of joy. Nadal holds.
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Spain
*Nadal 6-2 3-6 3-3 Fish
Fish is really making a pig's ear of this. Too many unforced errors hands Nadal the break back.
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USA
Nadal 6-2 3-6 2-3 Fish*
Fish is going for everything now - he smells blood. A brilliant volley at the net from Fish means he has break point. And the American takes his chance after he leaves Nadal struggling at the other side of the court. The Spaniard is broken again.
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Hawkeye
*Nadal 6-2 3-6 2-2 Fish
Nadal looks a bit peaky out there - not sure what it may be. Mr.Fish challenges and the computer agrees. Nadal takes the game to deuce but Fish fires down his third ace of the match to level.
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Nadal 6-2 3-6 2-1 Fish*
The Fish is flying. A tired Nadal swings at a forehand from the back and sends it wide - two break points for Fish. The man from Spain saves the first but fails to save the second. Fish breaks back.
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*Nadal 6-2 3-6 2-0 Fish
It's fair to say Nadal's gone up the gears. He has two break points thanks to a tremendous whipped forehand. He wastes the first but takes the second with a passing shot - that was very Nadal. The Spaniard zooms off to the bathroom. He takes more than two minutes.
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Love is in the air
Nadal 6-2 3-6 1-0 Fish*
Nadal wins his service game to love. Time for a love graphic.
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Twitter
mark_leitner on Twitter: "Much more encouraging from fish! Hopefully he can make it count in the decider #bbctennis"

Twitter
BBC Sport's David Ornstein on Twitter at the O2 Arena: "For the first time all evening, chants of 'USA!" drown out "Vamos Rafa!' as Fish takes 2nd set 6-3. Time for a late-night decider #bbctennis"

USA
Hawkeye
*Nadal 6-2 3-6 Fish
It's challenge time again. The machine says the call stands and Nadal loses. Fish serves a double fault and it's 15-30. Well now, the game moves to 30-40 but Fish saves the break. The American challenges but the machine says "no". Nevermind, he takes the set.
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Nadal 6-2 3-5 Fish*
Fish is beginning to gallop into shots - a sure sign that things are going well. I mean, for which other reason would you gallop? Anyway, Fish has two set points on Nadal's serve. He messes up the first with a forehand which he overstretched for. He has no chance of taking the second as a result of beautiful drop from the Spaniard. It's deuce but Fish carves up another break. Nadal saves. Fish has another break point, but Nadal's serve results in an awkward return. The world number two survives.
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Hawkeye
*Nadal 6-2 2-5 Fish
Hawk-Eye is called upon by the humans again. Nadal fails. The Spaniard fails to break and now he has to hold serve to stay in the set.
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Nadal 6-2 2-4 Fish*
A brilliant return from the back sees Fish level at 30-30 on Nadal's serve. He then rustles up another break point with another good volley at the net having dictated the rally. Fish sends the next long - we're at deuce. The American has another break point. Nadal saves again and survives the break threat.
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Twitter
dimonaco92 on Twitter: "You have to credit the way Mardy Fish has put in a lot of effort over the past few seasons! He deserves a good showing in London #bbctennis"

*Nadal 6-2 1-4 Fish
Fish is in a little bit of trouble at 30-30, but escapes and eventually holds with a lovely angled volley.
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Nadal 6-2 1-3 Fish*
Nadal is having a few problems with his first serve but holds thanks to a brilliant double-hander laced with venom.
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*Nadal 6-2 0-3 Fish
Good serves and control at the net helps Fish hold serve.
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USA
Nadal 6-2 0-2 Fish*
Nadal stutters a little after sending back a long forehand. It's 40-30 on his serve. A wild double-handed backhand moves the game to deuce. But he follows that with a cracking curling forehand pass down the line from Nadal for advantage - I tried to do that in a video game and failed. He then double faults. The Spaniard then fires one long from the back. Break point for Fish. The American makes it count. Time for the US up-arrow.
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Twitter
BBC Sport's David Ornstein on Twitter at the O2 Arena: "It'll take more than "Stand By Me" on the PA system to help Fish turn this one around. Rafa wins 1st set 6-2, looks in fine form #bbctennis"

*Nadal 6-2 0-1 Fish
A couple of good serves puts Fish in a good position to seal the first game of the second set on his serve. He makes sure he does.
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Spain
Nadal 6-2 Fish*
Fish makes his 15th unforced error. Nadal fires an ace down the central reservation to give himself two set points. He takes the first after Fish fires a return long.
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Twitter
TomClazieFlynn on Twitter: "This isn't exactly gold, fish. #bbctennis"

Spain
*Nadal 5-2 Fish
Somebody uses the flash on their camera which gets a telling off from the umpire - a typical applause from the crowd follows, but not as righteous is volume as the Wimbledon lot. Hmmmm. Back to the tennis, Nadal has another break point which he seals with a forehand return down the line.
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Hawkeye
Nadal 4-2 Fish*
A poor drop from Nadal allows Fish to steal the first point. It's challenge o'clock from Fish - the American loses to Hawkeye. The machine has yet to be beaten today, if I recall rightly. A bit Terminator-esque. Nadal and Fish then take part in a startlingly long rally - the Spaniard comes out on top. Typical. It's 30-15. Nadal eventually seals the deal with a forehand into the corner. Stylish.
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*Nadal 3-2 Fish
They're both struggling a little - understandable, because they haven't played much competitive tennis recently. It's 30-30 but Fish eventually holds with a blistering serve which sends Spain's finest halfway to his homeland.
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Nadal 3-1 Fish*
Nadal canters to 40-0 - then double faults. But the Spaniard wins the game after Fish's return from the baseline fails to climb over the net.
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Twitter
BBC Sport's David Ornstein on Twitter at the O2 Arena: "Straw poll of fans suggests Rafa, in a new charcoal outfit, looks like he means business. Do Fish errors in warm-up belie nerves? #bbctennis"

*Nadal 2-1 Fish
Fish fires in his first big serve at 131mph. He follows that with a deft volley at the net. The American gets his first game on the board. Meanwhile, the cameras focus on Arsenal midfielder Andrey Arshavin, who also watched the first match with his family at 1400 GMT. Keen.
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Nadal 2-0 Fish*
Points are shared in a couple of short rallies from the baseline. A lovely return from Fish pulls the scores back to 40-30 and gives Nadal something to think about. But Fish spoils his good work with a long forehand. Nadal holds.
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Spain
*Nadal 1-0 Fish
Fish is 0-30 - not a great start. He missed the last two tournaments because of a hamstring problem so it will be interesting to see how he does in the finale event. The American sends a volley wide at the net and it's two break points for Nadal. The Spaniard looks for a winner but fires the cross-court forehand wide. Fish then fails with a volley at the net. Nadal's a break up.
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2036:Right, we're set. Fish to serve.

2035: Nadal's having some ointment being rubbed on his thumb, near the nail, by the trainer - I'm not quite sure what that's for. He's also getting tape wrapped around the thumb. Bless.

2031: OK, are we all ready for the second match of the ATP World Tour Finals? Not a bad way to finish the weekend.

2026: I have the feeling that Nadal's kicking serves will annoy Fish. The American, of course, has got a decent serve too.

Twitter
MHorrex on Twitter: "Could be a very good match tonight. If Fish starts off aggressive we could see a very tight contest. However, Nadal in 3 for me"

2022: The umpire to the players: "If you have any problems then you know where to find me." What a wiseguy!

2019: The players are come out to The Clash's London Calling. Another song for tomorrow organisers?

Twitter
BBC Sport's David Ornstein on Twitter at the O2 Arena: "Pitch black inside the O2 as we await Rafa/Fish. Dramatic build-up = cracking evening atmos. Lots of Esp/US flags #bbctennis"

Tim Henman
2017: If you refresh the page then you'll see a BBC 5 live sports extra icon you can click on a listen to some wonderful commentary. And here's another tennis treat, former British number one Tim Henman spoke to BBC Sport and gave his views on Andy Murray's chances at the o2. You can read his thoughts on this website.

Text in your views on 81111
Jon, courtside, via text on 81111: "Have got tickets for Rafa-Fish tonight. I'm sincerely hoping Mardy finds a way past his injury [hamstring at the Swiss Indoors] and puts Nadal in his plaice!"

2011: Not pun intended (of course, it's intended) but Fish has taken a battering in the head-to-heads. Nadal leads 7-1, with the American's only victory over the Spaniard coming this year on the hard stuff in Cincinnati - at least it was this year. As I said, there will be no more Fish puns in this live text commentary.

2008: We're back. The crowds are back. London's o2 is buzzing with excitement about the next ATP World Tour Finals singles match on the big blue stage - Rafael Nadal v Mardy Fish. Earlier, defending champion Roger Federer defeated Jo-Wilfried Tsonga to get his campaign off to a grand start, so how will Spain's Nadal fair against rank-outsider and world number eight Fish?



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see also
Nadal battles to win against Fish
20 Nov 11 |  Tennis
Federer wins Tour Finals opener
20 Nov 11 |  Tennis
Djokovic out of Paris with injury
14 Nov 11 |  Tennis
Berdych win completes O2 line-up
10 Nov 11 |  Tennis
Superb Murray powers past Roddick
11 Nov 11 |  Tennis
Murray eases past Chardy in Paris
09 Nov 11 |  Tennis
Nadal pulls out of Paris Masters
04 Nov 11 |  Tennis
Murray pulls out of Swiss Indoors
03 Nov 11 |  Tennis
Tennis on the BBC
26 Oct 11 |  Tennis


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