Tuesday, 23 October, 2018

Diego Schwartzman stops game on set point to get ailing spectator help

Richard Gasquet 'Nadal has a different game his intensity is monstrous' Watch: Rafael Nadal Makes Ball Boy's Day At Roland Garros
Tamara Craig | 07 June, 2018, 15:28

Rafael Nadal was two points away from levelling his quarter-final against an inspired Diego Schwartzman when rain halted play at the French Open on Thursday (AEST).

In the second quarter-final Marin Cilic and Juan Martin Del Potro were locked together at 5-5 in a first-set tiebreak.

Whoever reaches the final from that side of the draw will face either Austrian seventh seed Dominic Thiem or unseeded Italian Marco Cecchinato in Sunday's final.

However, his fearless approach was completely ruined by the rain delays and allowed Nadal to regain control.

Nadal has now reached at least the quarter-finals at the French Open in 12 of the 14 years he has played the tournament.

The 25-year-old Argentine possesses a stinging forehand and used it aggressively to rock Nadal on Wednesday.

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But play was stopped with Nadal at 5-3, 30-15.

Nadal, 32, lost his opening service game and trailed 2-0 in the first set before recovering well in Paris.

On Thursday, it was rarely used as effectively. It was the second interruption of the match; Schwartzman, a 5ft 7in bundle of energy and snappy ground strokes, was a break up in the second set when the skies first opened.

From the moment Nadal took the second set, it looked unlikely Schwartzman would earn a first win in six attempts against the man at whose academy he had previously trained.

Nadal broke back, yeah, sure, but then Schwartzman broke again, with an outrageous return that dove down inside the baseline and helped arrange a blasted forehand victor into the corner.

Nadal was soon back on serve when it was Marterer's turn to double fault and after saving two break points in game five, the Spaniard carried his momentum into the next with a break to love and a 4-2 advantage courtesy of a fine inside-out forehand.

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