Rafael Nadal through to Rome Open second round but not without huge fight against Zizou Bergs

Thursday, 09 May 2024 at 16:19
After losing the first set and suffering a lot in the next two to come back, Rafael Nadal has managed to beat Zizou Bergs in the first round match of the Rome Masters. The result was 6-4, 3-6, 4-6.
In the first set, Nadal started winning his first service game showing a very remarkable success with his first serves. With 1-2 in favor, Rafa got the first break of the match, but he was not going to confirm the break, as Bergs broke Rafa's serve and won his serve to tie the set again, 3-3.
The most delicate moment of the first set for Rafa Nadal would come with 4-4 on the scoreboard, when Zizou Bergs again got a break on the Spaniard's serve to get 5-4 up and serving to take the first set. So it was to be, and with 6-4 closing with a game in white the Belgian forced Nadal to have to come back from a set down if he wanted to advance to the second round in Rome.
After a first set with 16 unforced errors and only three winners, Nadal had to start the second set with a clean slate. Rafa would get off to the best possible start, with a break on Bergs' first serve to put himself 0-2 up, and then confirm the break with a game in white, 0-3.
With 1-3, Nadal saved a break ball to get an important game that left him 1-4. Bergs was now comfortable with his serve, but although he made Rafa suffer when the Spaniard served, so far he did not get that break that would give him the opportunity to tie the set, 2-5. At 3-5, Nadal managed to save a very important break ball, and then won three consecutive points to tie the match taking the second set 3-6.
Everything was to be decided in the third and final set. At 1-1, Nadal managed to break Bergs' serve with the first break point he had. He then confirmed the break with little trouble with his next serve, and Rafa went ahead to 1-3.
With 2-3, Bergs was 0-40 with three break balls to equalize the set, but Nadal managed to lift them all to get a very important game and go ahead to 2-4. Bergs cut to 3-4, being very effective with his serve, and leaving the ball in Nadal's court.
Nadal was again in a tricky situation with his serve after Bergs went 0-30 up. However, Rafa won the next four consecutive points to make it 3-5. At 4-5, after Zizou Bergs again won his serve without complications, Rafa Nadal would serve to win the match, which he would take 4-6 in the third set.
In the second round, Nadal will have a huge challenge, as he will face Hubert Hurkacz, the seventh seed at the Rome Masters.

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