Roger Federer’s former coach, Paul Annacone spent three and a half years in solving Federer’s problem with Nadal. Rafael Nadal had the beating of Roger Federer for a long time but as the tables have turned at least in 2017.
Federer has won their last three meetings with the most notable victory being the Australian Open final earlier this year.
After Melbourne, Federer has beaten Nadal at Indian Wells as well as in Miami. Now that Federer is on a break, Nadal has picked up the Monte Carlo masters title for the tenth time in his career.
Paul Annocone says that Federer has looked much more aggressive against Nadal in recent matches having used his backhand to great effect.
‘I think it’s huge. I lived it for three-and-a-half years trying to solve the Rafa problem’, Annacone said laughing. ‘And the Rafa problem is that he’s great; he’s a tremendous competitor with a lot of margin on his groundstrokes, so when the pressure comes his margin creates safety and his athleticism allows him to stay in points longer which tends to create, very simplistically, more errors from Federer’s style of game.’
Commenting on Australian Open final he added: ‘So when Roger all of a sudden at 3-1 (down) in the fifth, is able to play 20 minutes of spectacular tennis and basically hit Rafa off the court, that is an awakening. And I think we’ve seen a little bit of the trickle-down effect in Indian Wells and in Miami. That Roger now feels like, oh, I can do this.’