2012 Australian Open – Day 11 Men’s Notes

DAY 11 MEN’S NOTES - Thursday 26 January | Quarterfinals Bottom Half
(via ITF Communications)

NO. 2 RAFAEL NADAL (ESP) v NO. 3 ROGER FEDERER (SUI)

Head-to-head: Nadal leads 17-9

This is the pair’s first semifinal meeting at a Grand Slam since 2005 Roland Garros and just the 2nd time that they have met outside of the final in a major. In Grand Slam play Nadal leads Federer 7-2 – both the Swiss’s victories have come at Wimbledon.

• Nadal is one of just 2 active players who have had more than one career meeting with Federer to hold a winning head-to-head, the other is Andy Murray (8-6).

• This is the first Grand Slam semifinal between 2 men who have achieved the career Grand Slam. It is just the 4th time in history that 2 men have met at a major having achieved the career Grand Slam. Roy Emerson and Rod Laver met at majors twice after achieving the career Grand Slam and Federer and Nadal met at 2011 Roland Garros having both won the title at all 4 majors.

• Lefthander NADAL is bidding to reach his 4th consecutive Grand Slam final. In the Open Era only 3 different men have reached 4 or more consecutive Grand Slam finals. Today’s opponent holds the record for the most consecutive Grand Slam final appearances having reached 10 back-to-back finals from 2005 Wimbledon through the 2007 US Open.

• Nadal is bidding to reach his 15th Grand Slam final. He is currently in joint-10th place with Bill Tilden on the all-time list of most appearances in Grand Slam finals. Today’s opponent has made the most Grand Slam final appearances of all time (23).

• Nadal is through to the semifinals here for the first time since 2009. He won the title here that year, defeating today’s opponent 75 36 76 36 62 in the final. This is his 8th Australian Open.

• Nadal has a 14-3 win-loss record in Grand Slam semifinals. The last time he lost a semifinal at one of the majors was when he suffered his worst Grand Slam defeat (in terms of games won), losing 62 62 62 to Juan Martin del Potro at the 2009 US Open.

• In Nadal’s last 10 Grand Slam appearances (including this year’s Australian Open) he has only failed to reach the semifinals on 2 occasions – at Melbourne Park in 2010 and 2011. He has reached just one final here compared with 6 at Roland Garros, 5 at Wimbledon and 2 at the US Open.

• Nadal has won just 3 of his last 10 matches against Top 3 opposition – all 3 of his victories came over today’s opponent.

• Nadal is bidding to win his 2nd Australian Open title and his 11th Grand Slam title. He is currently joint 6th with Bill Tilden on the list of all-time Grand Slam men’s singles title holders behind Roger Federer (16), Pete Sampras (14), Roy Emerson (12), Bjorn Borg and Rod Laver (11).

• Nadal won 3 titles in 2011 – the fewest he had won in one season since winning just one in 2004. He won his 6th Roland Garros title (d. Federer 75 76 57 61) to equal Bjorn Borg’s record of 6 French Open titles. He also won the titles at Monte Carlo-1000 (d. Ferrer) and Barcelona (d. Ferrer). Nadal lost 7 finals, 6 against Novak Djokovic, including Wimbledon and the US Open, and one to Andy Murray.

• Nadal officially started his 2012 season at Doha where he fell in the semifinals (l. Gael Monfils). He had lost in the semifinals at the Abu Dhabi exhibition the week before, falling to Ferrer 63 62.

• Nadal dropped to No. 2 in the ATP World Tour Rankings after losing to Djokovic in the 2011 Wimbledon final.

• Just 11 of Nadal’s 46 career singles titles have come on hard court compared to 32 on clay.

• Nadal was instrumental in leading Spain to a 5th Davis Cup title in 11 years when he won the all-important 3rd point in the final in Seville by defeating Argentina’s Juan Martin del Potro 16 64 61 76. Nadal had never previously won the decisive rubber in a final. Spain host Kazakhstan in Oviedo in the World Group first round tie on 10-12 February.

• Nadal played 84 tour-level matches in 2011 – the most by any male player last year ahead of Janko Tipsarevic (80), Ferrer and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (both 79).

• Nadal’s 5 hour 14 minute 67 64 76 67 64 semifinal victory over Fernando Verdasco in 2009 is the longest men’s singles match at the Australian Open in terms of duration.

• Nadal won the Arthur Ashe Humanitarian Award for his charitable efforts with the Rafa Nadal Foundation at the 2011 ATP World Tour Awards.

• Nadal is coached by his uncle Toni since the age of 4.

• FEDERER is bidding to win his 233rd Grand Slam match today to equal Jimmy Connors’s record for the most Grand Slam match wins in the Open Era.

• This is Federer’s 9th consecutive Australian Open semifinal, an Open Era record. By reaching the semifinal here this year, he has extended his record for the most consecutive semifinal appearances at the Australian Open. He also holds the Open Era record for the most consecutive semifinal appearances at Wimbledon (7) and Roland Garros (5).

• The only other player in the Open Era to have made more consecutive semifinal appearances at one Grand Slam tournament is Jimmy Connors.

• Federer is the only player in the Open Era to have made 7 or more straight semifinal appearances at multiple Grand Slam events, having achieved this at the Australian Open, Wimbledon and the US Open.

• Federer is bidding to win his 500th Tour-level hard court match. In the Open Era, only Andre Agassi has more wins on hard court (596 wins).

• Federer’s quarterfinal victory over del Potro was his 1000th Tour-level match. He is one of just 8 male players to have played in 1000 or more Tour-level matches.

• Federer is looking to reach his 24th Grand Slam final, and extend the all-time record that he took sole ownership of at 2009 Wimbledon. Federer has a 23-6 record in Grand Slam semifinals.

• Federer is the first man aged 30 or over to reach the semifinals here since Andre Agassi in 2004 (33 years 278 days). Agassi was the last man aged 30 or over to reach a Grand Slam final, aged 35 years 135 days at the 2005 US Open.

• Federer has won just 2 of his last 6 matches against Top 2 opposition, with 3 of his 4 losses coming against today’s opponent. Overall Federer has a 21-20 win-loss record against Top 2 players – 14 of those losses have come against Nadal.

• In the last 5 years Federer has lost to just 2 different Spanish men – Albert Montanes and today’s opponent. He fell to Montanes in the semifinals at 2010 Estoril.

• Since winning his first Grand Slam title at 2003 Wimbledon, Federer has lost to just two different left-handed players – Jurgen Melzer (1 loss) and today’s opponent (17 losses).

• This is Federer’s 49th straight Grand Slam event, which puts him in 3rd place for the longest streak of consecutive Grand Slam Open Era appearances.

• Federer is bidding to become the 2nd man in history to win 5 Australian Open singles titles. The only man to do so was Roy Emerson, who went on to win his 6th Australian Open title in 1967.

• Federer has won 4 titles here – in 2004 (d. Marat Safin 76 64 62), 2006 (d. Marcos Baghdatis 57 75 60 62), 2007 (d. Fernando Gonzalez 76 64 64) and 2010 (d. Andy Murray 63 64 76).

• Federer warmed up for the Australian Open at Doha where as No. 2 seed he gave a walkover in the semifinals to Jo-Wilfried Tsonga with a back injury. Federer was the last player to win a pre-Australian Open tournament and go on to win the Australian Open title when he won 2006 Doha.

• Federer finished 2011 on a 17-match winning streak after winning the titles at Basel, Paris and the ATP World Tour Finals – his 70th Tour-level title in his 100th final. He finished the year ranked in the Top 3 for the 9th straight year.

• Last year Federer failed to win a Grand Slam title for the first year since capturing his first major at 2003 Wimbledon. In 2011, the Swiss lost to Novak Djokovic in the semifinals of the Australian Open and the US Open, finished runner-up to today’s opponent at Roland Garros and fell in the quarterfinals to Tsonga at Wimbledon.

• Federer extended his lead at the top of the all-time Grand Slam titles list in men’s tennis by winning his 16th Grand Slam title at the 2010 Australian Open. Five women have won more Grand Slam singles titles than Federer [see Preview page 2].

• Federer holds the record for the most hard court titles of all time with 48.

• For the 39th straight Grand Slam, Federer is the last Swiss player left in the main draw. The last time a Swiss player progressed further than Federer at a Grand Slam event was at 2002 Wimbledon. Marc Rosset (2nd round), George Bastl (3rd round), and Michel Kratochvil (round of 16) all made it further than Federer, who lost in the 1st round to Mario Ancic.

• Having received a walkover in the 2nd round here, Federer has now been given 3 walkovers at 51 Grand Slam events. He received a walkover from Andrei Pavel in the round of 16 at the 2004 US Open and from Tommy Haas in the round of 16 at 2007 Wimbledon.

• Federer began working with Paul Annacone, who coached Pete Sampras to 9 of his 14 Grand Slam titles, in July 2010. He is here as usual with Swiss Davis Cup captain Severin Luthi. His fitness trainer is Stephane Vivier (since October 2009).

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