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Nadal beats Tsonga, equals with Borg and Spain achieves a record in the second round

Nadal beats Tsonga, equals with Borg and Spain achieves a record in the second round

Quick on the legs, superb to the rest, and unapproachable with his service, Rafael Nadal beat the Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, 6-2, 6-3 and 6-2, to access the round of 16 at Wimbledon and achieve with his victory a record for him tennis Spanish, which for the first time in the history of this Grand Slam, will have four representatives in that round.

With the victory before Carla Suárez against the American Lauren Davis, that of Nadal and those of Fernando Verdasco and Roberto Bautista this Friday, Spain will have these four players in the second week of Wimbledon, and for the first time adding four representatives in the fourth round this big.

“I have done everything very well,” said Nadal satisfied as soon as he finished his devastating victory against Tsonga, “nobody wants to face an opponent as tough as him in the third round, but today has been my day,” he said happily after an hour and 48 minutes of fighting.

«I have good memories of my last game here, in the semifinals last year and I am happy with how I am playing this first week, but I have to go day by day. This gives me good feelings to start the second week, but tomorrow we have to go back to work again “, recalled the Spaniard, who after” Middle Sunday “, a traditional day off, will play again on Monday.

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Nadal also added his 51st victory at Wimbledon, equaling Bjorn Borg of Sweden in eighth place on the list of players who have achieved the most victories in this tournament, six of the British Andy Murray and eight of the American John McEnroe. Roger Federer, who plays today against the French Lucas Pouille, is the leader with 97.

The Spanish player will face in the second round against the winner of the duel between the Portuguese Joao Souza and the British Dan Evans, and the table also opens for him, since the Italian Fabio Fognini, 12th favorite, his potential rival in the quarterfinals, fell before the American Tennys Sandgren, by 6-3, 7-6 (12) and 6-3, although the also American and great gunner, Sam Querrey, who defeated the Australian John Millman, by 7-6 (3), continues to threaten 7-6 (8) and 6-3.

“The duel against Kyrgios was the best training for Nadal in a game,” Francis Roig, the Balearic coach this year at All England, had told EFE where this morning, despite the appointment with Tsonga, ‘Rafa’ returned to star in an electrifying workout with Jaume Munar and Tomeu Salva.

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His serve pulverized records, with a percentage that reached at some stage up to 92 percent of points won with the first service, and 77 percent with the second, and his movements in the Central, where Federer says he has found the track somewhat slower than other years, they shattered the defense of Tsonga, a semi-finalist twice in this tournament.

Nadal did not yield a single breaking point. In the first set he only lost three with his serve, and two in the second and third. He also won three blank games with that weapon, devastating this time, with which he ended the match by transforming the fourth match ball with his eleventh ace, in a big way.

Tsonga, who saw his serve stolen on five occasions, attended Nadal’s display with a shrug. The Frenchman, who surpassed two match points with his service in the seventh game of the third quarter, had no choice but to cheer on the crowd. “I can’t hear you, I can’t hear you,” he told the Central’s 15,000 fans, when he sought refuge in their shelter.

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This victory, the 35th this year, helps Nadal pass Greek Stefanos Tsitsipas. Federer can also achieve that figure by later beating Pouille.

The legendary Billie Jean King, founder of the WTA, and Rod Laver, the only player capable of winning all four Grand Slams in the same season, and also twice, attended the show of Nadal who did not give the rhythm one iota until the end , forcing Tsonga to suffer more than necessary.

The Frenchman had been able to beat Nadal in the only match on grass previously played, in the Queen’s quarterfinals in 2011, and had delivered a superb beating in the second of the previous 12, in the semifinals of the Open de Australia in 2008 (6-2,6-3 and 6-2)

But in this Wimbledon, the first of the Grand Slam after 11 years, Nadal showed that the feelings exhibited against Kyrgios have revalued his tennis and that the confidence gained in that duel can serve as a springboard for greater heights. EFE.

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