Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Santiago R1: David loses Focus but beats Berlocq

(Jim Rydell/Movistar Open)

The latest interview with David you can read here.

"It was a tough match, I lost my focus in the second set."
And apart from that, according to David, it also was "not a good show" that the crowd at Santiago got to see but in the end, it was enough to beat Carlos Berlocq 6-2, 2-6, 6-2 in an hour and 57 minutes. In the second round, David will now face his Davis Cup teammate Horacio Zeballos. The match will take place on Thursday.

After one of David's typically slow starts, including facing a couple of break points in his very first service game, he got on track very quickly and broke Berlocq for the first time in the following game (2-1). And when David extended his lead to a comfortable 4-1 (with a double break), it looked like this match might turn into a rather one-sided affair. Serving for the set at 5-2, David made two double faults, one of them at set point. But when he went on to convert his second set point moments later, it seemed like no more than just a glitch. Of the sort that David tends to have in moments like this.
That it was more than just a glitch became clear in the second set. David immediately lost his serve (for 2-0 Berlocq). And although he managed to break back for 3-2, that re-break would turn out to be the last game he'd win in this set. Posting terrible numbers on serve and producing more double faults, some of them at the worst possible moments. The worst example of which was his service game to save the set at 5-2 Berlocq, with David making 3 double faults in the course of that game, including one to set up a set point for Berlocq. He took it and the second set.
At that point, I was beginning to fear that David might have physical problems, as he seemed unable to serve properly. In the third set, however, he managed to get back on track again. Serving much better again and breaking Berlocq early on (to go up 2-1). Up 3-2, David got into trouble again when another double fault (the only one in the third set) meant another break point for Berlocq. But this time David managed to hold and to afterwards go up a double break again before, serving for the match at 5-2, converting his second match point.

A strange match and even more difficult to explain, having followed it only on the scoreboard. Here's David's way of explaining it:
"It's the first tournament on clay and therefore I need to adapt."

"I wasn't troubled so much by the conditions (heat and a bit of altitude) because it's the same in Córdoba. But this was the first match I've played on clay this year. It was a tough encounter and I had difficulties in the second set. But in the third set I raised my level again."
(David's quotes:, ATP website/Spanish version)
And that's what's important of course, that he managed to raise his level again in the third set. But also that the second apparently was a glitch after all - a long one. And, always a factor with David on clay: no injuries. Hopefully, he'll be able to continue adjusting. Without physical problems.


  1. thanks, well i was relieved that there were no injuries after all.
    I couldn't find the gettyimages pictures without watermarks as well.
    and having a somehow tough match in the 1st round is not a bad sign at all, remember Ferrer was the one winning with some sort of difficulties in the earlier rounds in Auckland, when david won all matches 2-0, ferrer won the title at the end, so lets hope david will adjust and go through.

  2. I agree Noubar!

    It's his first clay match and maybe it isn't too easy to adjust the game.

  3. A win is a win. No easy matches in the atp - as opposed to what some over-confident posters allude to. I bet his opponent was ranked in the top 20 or 30 ifthe ranking was based on only clay results. David had trouble and was able to adjust. Looks like he has a good record on clay, but if you don't play on it for a while, it throws you for a loop when you go back to playing tournaments on clay.
    So, I think it shows physical and mental toughness to be able to adjust.
    Mostly I'm cautiously optimistic about his physical toughness and body holding up. He has a long sequence of clay tournaments to go through, so I hope he paces himself and looks at the long picture and not just winning matches; keep getting stronger and stay injury free.

  4. Hi,my name is Adrian,Im from Zagreb,a fan of David,nice to see more fans,keep up the good work

  5. Well, Joe, as the "over-confident" poster you are referring to, let me respond by saying there's no excuse for Nalbandian to lose to the likes of Berlocq, coming off of a hard-court tournament or not. At the same time, these are professional opponents and winning the Movistar Open would be a title that I personally would be proud of.

    A title is always hard to come by at this level, and I understand that. Every player in the world - including Top 10 guys - would be happy to win a 250 event, so trust me that I'll be very happy if Nalbandian wins the tournament this week. So Vamos Daveeeed indeed!!!!!

    Now that he's in it and playing, I hope he gets the hardware. But at the same time, I have no problem saying that this is his title for the taking. He's the best player at the event by far and this draw should be one big 5-match cupcake for him if he plays anywhere near his best.

  6. Let me follow up by saying that a hypothetical final against Belluci would be a very solid win. Belluci is the defending champion, hits with some pretty big power, and he's left-handed, which always has the potential for making things a little bit tricky. That's why it is good that Nalbandian got to play him in the exhibition a little over a month ago.

  7. Welcome to the comments, Adrian.

  8. On a different note and although it doesn't seem so very relevant right now: The free stream sites and Channelsurfing (plus a few others) were shut down by US Homeland Security because of copyright violations.
    Both sites are back up again, now on new servers outside the US. But this might be a first sign of more trouble ahead...

  9. Hope there won't be any streaming problems on Friday, and i wish David gets to play in one of the QFs lol..

  10. Thanks for the info on and Channelsurfing, Julia. I was wondering yesterday why I couldn't get on Atdhe while looking for a stream. They didn't even have a message on at the time. It's now, but I don't know for how long. Glad David is OK. I thought he probably was since he served fine in the 3rd set.

  11. As far as I know, is the correct new site.

  12. And this is what it looks like, if you try to access one of the other sites that has been shut down. Rojadirecta in this case, which I sometimes used to watch football.

  13. Yeah, I've seen it now, Julia. I'm sure it's about cable companies whining about losing subscribers due to folks getting free content on the Internet. I don't know what it's like in Europe, but here in the U.S. cable rates are skyrocketing and people are getting fed up. was my best source for getting live tennis streams.

  14. Well, the thing with Europe is that it's different for each and every country. Here in Germany, what little tennis you get to see is on free TV. Cable doesn't make much of a difference, except for Wimbledon.
    But this new crackdown by the DHS (why not the FBI?) has apparently something to do with the Super Bowl. - Or so I've heard.

    I've never used that much but I always try to link as many streams as possible for David's matches.

  15. The Super Bowl is not until this coming Sunday. What does that have to do with anything?

  16. Yeah, Julia and Tiffany, I don't know what the Super Bowl has to do with it either. The game is on free TV anyway.

  17. looks like am the luckiest concerning this, I have all GSs, Masters, 500s broadcasted via Aljazeera, in the addition to half of the 250s, but Santiago is not one.

  18. OMG Julia, laughing my ass off, that picture of Ole attached to the interview is just epic, i say use it in a post.

  19. They are cracking down on the streaming sites in advance, with the Superbowl coming soon, so that people will watch on TV.

  20. The pic is in a post, it's just a backdated one. ;)
    But this year, my plan is to collect the best photos of the season. I guess now it'll also be the worst, as in the funniest ones - and this has to be one of them.

  21. Though I think that it might be their way of illustrating David's comment about liking the altitude.