Rafael Nadal made a convincing start in Montreal 2017, dropping only three games versus Borna Coric in the second round. Rafa bounced back that year after a challenging period in 2015 and 2016, finding his A-game again and regaining the Roland Garros crown.
As in previous years, Nadal did not play well at Wimbledon, taking a rest and hoping for a better run at the Canada Masters. Rafa ousted the young Croat 6-1, 6-2 in 71 minutes for a reliable start and a boost. Nadal dominated from start to finish, playing well on serve and return.
Thus, he secured his 337th Masters 1000 victory and the 47th in 2017, moving closer to a milestone. Also, Nadal needed one more triumph to dethrone Andy Murray and become world no. 1 for the first time in over three hours. Rafa served at 71%, and his initial shot worked like a charm.
He dropped 13 points in eight service games and faced only one break point. On the other hand, Nadal took over half of the return points to keep Coric under constant pressure and break him four times from five opportunities.
Rafael Nadal made a strong start in Montreal 2017 over Borna Coric.
Rafa fired 20 winners and 18 unforced errors, playing aggressive tennis and reducing Borna to seven winners and 20 mistakes. The Spaniard had a clear edge in the shortest range up to four strokes and in the more extended ones.
At the same time, Borna stayed in touch with the mighty rival in the mid-range exchanges, although it was not enough to keep him safe. As was expected, the young Croat struggled to impose his forehand, especially against the opponent who covered the court brilliantly.
The Spaniard was off to a perfect start, holding with an ace in the opening game and forcing Coric's error in the next one to forge a 2-0 advantage. Rafa grabbed another break in game four to increase the lead and held at 5-1 after an extended rally to wrap up the opener in under half an hour.
Borna squandered three game points at the beginning of the second set and got broken, sending Rafa further ahead. Delivering one strong shot after another, Nadal clinched a break at 15 in game five to move closer to the finish line.
The Spaniard saved that lone break chance at 4-1 and landed a service winner in the eighth game to move over the top and set the third-round clash against the young gun Denis Shapovalov.
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