Rafael Nadal has looked ominous for most part of the this year’s Wimbledon. Ever since he stepped foot on grass, Nadal has had troubles dealing with players who hit a hard ball. And Khachanov hits it as hard as anyone on court.
But the 2017 Nadal is a different animal, he has transformed his game to cope with these young hard hitters and is very easily bossing the tour at the moment.
He brushed aside the Russian in three rather tame sets, sending out warnings to any and everyone who is bidding for that Wimbledon title.
Khachanov’s only consolation last night was that he was able to dish out one of the lobs of the tournament, dumbfounding Nadal in the process!
The incident happened in the third set, when Khachanov was putting a lot of pressure on the Nadal serve and holding his to perfection.
Khachanov dished out a booming serve out to Nadal’s forehand. Nadal could only manage to send a short ball across, which Khachanov jumped on(coming to the net), hitting another booming forehand to Nadal’s forehand side. But Nadal was there waiting.
He controlled the ball beautifully and sent a perfect lob over Khachanov, to his forehand side.
Khachanov then instinctively reached out for the ball on the half turn and pulled off one of the lobs of the season to leave Nadal dumbstruck.
But that was the only high point for Khachanov in the entire match, as Nadal was in imperious form all through.
Nadal will now face Gilles Muller in round 4 on Monday and would be hoping for a similar, solid performance.
Nadal has had a stellar season so far, losing to only Federer and Thiem in the entire season. He hasn’t dropped a set since his loss to Thiem to in Rome and is looking like the favourite for the Wimbledon title.