Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal have missed the US Open in the past two years, and it's hard to imagine their clash in New York before retiring. Federer and Nadal were the best players in the world in 2005, winning 11 ATP titles each and sharing three Majors and eight Masters 1000s.
Nadal conquered Roland Garros in his debut in Paris, while Federer defended the title at Wimbledon, and both headed to New York with high hopes. The Spaniard made a winning start after a 6-3, 6-3, 6-4 victory over Bobby Reynolds in one hour and 49 minutes.
Rafa lost ten points in his games against the American and took advantage of the two break opportunities to keep the pressure on the other side. Despite throwing everything he had to Nadal, Reynolds suffered four breaks and ended his campaign.
Rafa was happy with his serve, although he still wanted to improve his game before the next few rounds to make a deep run in the last Major of the season. When asked about a possible final against Roger, Rafa said they are miles away from that match, noting that he didn't play well in New York in the past and that Roger hasn't even started his tournament yet.
Bertolucci on the Big 3
Former Italian Davis Cup captain Paolo Bertolucci recently remarked that while Roger Federer epitomizes tennis, Novak Djokovic is the best player of all time. According to Bertolucci, Djokovic and Nadal have unparalleled levels of mental strength, which sets them apart from their peers.
"Federer is tennis, we are all Federians, but the Djokovic of 2013 and of the last year and a half is the strongest player ever," Bertolucci said. "He and Nadal are able to keep mental and competitive rhythms that I would not have managed even five minutes.
But how do they do it? I envy and admire them." During the interview, Paolo Bertolucci also gave some interesting life advice to compatriot Lorenzo Musetti. "If I were him (Musetti) right now I would play fewer tournaments and take care of the preparation more," Bertolucci said.
"The boy does not yet have an adequate physicality. Then in tennis he also counts on finding the right woman," he went on. "You look at Federer, Djokovic and Nadal. Federer found himself a tennis player, like Berrettini; Djokovic met his wife at school, Nadal as a child. Otherwise you risk doing like Borg, who at a certain point got lost."