Rafael Nadal Stunned by Borna Coric in His Very First Return Match Since Wimbledon as US Open Chances Dwindle
Rafael Nadal has seen tremendous highs and lows this season. Earlier this year, he won the Australian Open and French Open titles, putting on marvelous displays of grit and determination. Additionally, he also lifted the title in Acapulco and the Melbourne Summer Set.
However, the 22-time Grand Slam champion has had his share of injury troubles that have forced him to miss some important tournaments. Recently, he made a comeback at the Western and Southern Open in Cincinnati. However, his comeback hasn’t gone according to his plans.
Borna Coric defeats Rafael Nadal in a Cincinnati thriller
In a closely-contested battle, the Spanish legend lost out against Borna Coric of Croatia. The match lasted for close to three hours as Coric got the better of Nadal in three sets 7-6 (9), 4-6, 6-3.
The first set was a neck-to-neck battle with both the players holding their serves. However, in the tie-breaker, Coric won points at crucial junctures to take the opening set 7-6.
Mar 19, 2022; Indian Wells, CA, USA; Rafael Nadal (ESP) reacts after missing a shot during a victory over Carlos Alcaraz (ESP) in their semifinal match in the BNP Paribas Open at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports
Further, Nadal made a comeback in the second set as he broke Coric’s serve in the seventh game. Subsequently, he went on to hold his serves as Nadal leveled the match by winning the second set 6-4.
The deciding set started with both the players trying to hold their serves. However, Coric punched a deciding blow to Nadal’s hopes when he broke the Spaniard’s serve in the sixth game of the third set. Eventually, he held his nerves to win the set 6-3 and enter the next round.
Rafael Nadal’s disappointing comeback
The 36-year-old was making a comeback in Cincinnati after recovering from an abdominal injury. He had sustained this injury during the Wimbledon Championships where he withdrew before his semi-final match against Nick Kyrgios.
Rafael Nadal will look to come back strongly during the US Open which starts on August 29. Meanwhile, Coric will take on Roberto Bautista Agut in the pre-quarter-finals of the Western and Southern Open in Cincinnati. The latter had earlier defeated Marcos Giron of the United States in his second-round match.