Rafael Nadal praises himself after ruthless Italian Open win over Damir Dzumhur | Tennis | Sport
Nadal’s dominant form over clay was snapped abruptly when he was beaten by Dominic Thiem at the Madrid Open.
But in his Italian Open second round match today, the 31-year-old showed no nerves as he swept to a 5-0 lead in the first set.
Nadal would go on to win the set 6-1 and he was even more ruthless in the second set as he won it 6-0 to clinch the match in just 61 minutes.
And Nadal was impressed with how well he played.
“It was a positive match, of course,” said Nadal.
“It was important, after a loss in Madrid, to come back strong. And that’s what I did today. I went on court with the right intensity.
“I don’t know how many mistakes I made, but not many. I also had control, more or less, of a high percentage of the points. That was the way that I want to play.”
The Spaniard will face either Denis Shapovalov or Robin Haase in the third round on Thursday.
But should he come through that match, his potential opponent will not be Thiem.
The Austrian was stunned at the Foro Italico by Fabio Fognini, losing 6-4, 1-6, 6-3 to the Italian.
“It was a good match, actually, from both of us, I would say,” said Thiem.
“[The match] was a very intense fight, basically from the beginning to the end. So I’m disappointed that I lost, obviously. But game-wise, I’m not really disappointed.”