Rafael Nadal remains perfect at Majors in 2022. Rafa defeated Fabio Fognini 2-6, 6-4, 6-2, 6-1 in two hours and 43 minutes to advance into the US Open third round. Nadal lost to Fognini from two sets to love up in New York seven years ago, and he did not make a good start on Thursday night at Arthur Ashe Stadium.
Fabio led 6-2, 4-2 after 68 minutes before Rafa shifted into a higher gear and claimed 16 of the final 19 games to seal the deal in under three hours. Nadal played better behind the first and second serve and took 24 points more than Fognini.
The Italian claimed 40% of the return points and delivered six breaks of serve. The Spaniard responded with over half of the return points on his tally, converting nine out of 14 opportunities to control the pace in the final 100 minutes and set the clash against Richard Gasquet.
Rafael Nadal defeated Fabio Fognini in four sets in New York.
Both players struggled to find the rhythm, hitting more unforced errors than winners. Fabio sprayed 60 mistakes to plague his chances and push Rafa into the last 32.
Nadal hit a forehand error in the opener's third game to experience a break and fall 2-1 behind. Fabio fired a forehand down the line winner in game six to open a 4-2 gap after 25 minutes. Struggling to make an impact with his initial shot, Nadal hit a double fault in game seven to find himself 5-2 behind.
Fognini saved a break point in game eight and held after Nadal's loose backhand for 6-2 in 34 minutes. The rivals traded five breaks at the start of the second set, and Fabio held at 3-2 with a forehand winner to deliver the first hold and increase his advantage.
With no room for errors, Nadal broke back at love in game eight to lock the result at 4-4 and start his streak. The Spaniard delivered another break in game ten to rattle off four straight games and gain massive confidence.
Nadal broke three times in a row in the third set and closed it 6-2 to move closer to the finish line. Rafa injured his nose at the start of the fourth set's fourth game after hitting himself with a bouncing racquet. He received a medical timeout and fended off break points in game five to remain in front. Nadal served for the victory in game seven and held at 30 to emerge at the top and advance into the third round.