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Nalbandian defeats Roger in Masters final

20.11.2005 | Tennis

Roger's record-chasing run ended in a dramatic five-set defeat on Sunday to David Nalbandian in the Masters Cup final.

 

The Argentine, who would not have made the eight-man draw if four of the top five players had not withdrawn, ended Roger's 35-match winning streak with a come-from-behind 6-7 (4) 6-7 (11) 6-2 6-1 7-6 (3).

 

The world no. 1 rallied from 0-4 in the deciding set and was two points from victory serving at 6-5 and 30-0 before Nalbandian broke back to force a tiebreaker.

 

Nalbandian earned three championship points when Roger buried a backhand into the net to make it 6-3 in the tiebreaker after 4 hours, 33 minutes. He clinched it when Roger netted a forehand. He dropped to his back on the court.

 

He becomes the first Argentine to win a year-ending tournament since Guillermo Vilas won the 1974 Masters in Melbourne.

 

"It's been a fantastic year. Unfortunately I couldn't win the last one but this year will be a great memory for me," said Roger. "To be back after the injury - I'm happy I made it so far. I'm proud of that."

 

For the world no. 1, it was only the second defeat in four Masters Cup campaigns going back to the 2002 semi-final. He had been in line for the first year-ending hat-trick since Ivan Lendl in 1985-1987.

 

This defeat stops Roger one win short of equalling John McEnroe's 1984 record winning percentage of 96.5.

 
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11/22/2005 | 12:18 AM
Great year, Roger! Great match. Although you were no fully recovered from the injury, you were great in the final. If all the players could play your injured-perfomance, there would be only fantastic matches to watch. Have an awesome vacation!
11/22/2005 | 12:14 AM
I just wrote you a long message of your loss. I don't know if there is a max of comments allowed or if it's slow or something. (Hopefully it will appear later). If not then I will type it again. I'd do that for your Roger... It may not be exact but, will
11/22/2005 | 12:00 AM
MAJETIC

I ALWAYS SAID THAT YOU ARE THE NUMBER ONE, BUT TODAY, I UNDERSTOOD BECAUSE
YOU ARE THE BEST PLAYER IN THE WORLD,
YOU ARE "A GENTELMAN" INSIDE OR OUTSIDE THE COURT, IS REALLY FOR ME AN
HONOUR TO BE YOUR FAN , TODAY YOU DIDN´T LOST , YOU WON
11/21/2005 | 11:54 PM
My dear Roger, I am very sorry about what happened... The thing that gives me confidence is that Nalbandian needed to play at 120% to beat Federer's 50%.. Come on Rog, keep on pushing, we will have a fantastic 2006!! Thanks for gifting me emotions... Erco
11/21/2005 | 11:45 PM
dear roger:
even though i´m from argentina I wanted so badly you to win this masters... but i´m sure that 2006 will be another great year for you... show them what´s this all about, and never dare challenge the mighty TITAN!
kriko
11/21/2005 | 11:36 PM
TO LOSE? WHO PERDIO '? Nadal, lost. Agassi, lost. Safin, lost. Roddick, lost. And NOBODY GAINED SO MUCH AS VOS, ROGER! They lost those that did not put the anger and the entereza to play in any field, those lost, putting excuses which vos you had i
kriko
11/21/2005 | 11:34 PM
¿PERDER? ¿QUIÉN PERDIÓ?

Nadal, perdió.

Agassi, perdió.

Safin, perdió.

Roddick, perdió.

¡¡¡¡¡Y NADIE GANÓ TANTO COMO VOS, ROGER!!


Perdieron los que no pusieron el coraje y la entereza de jugar en cualquier cancha, esos perdieron, ponie
11/21/2005 | 11:20 PM
Dear Roger,
I am sorry to hear that you have lost against Nalbandian, but I am haapy as long as you are happy.
11/21/2005 | 11:04 PM
Hey Roger,
I finally got to see the final after work today (I had to tape it). I'm soooo sorry you didn't win, especially after that comeback from 0-4 to 4-4. What a display of courage and determination!!! As always, you showed nothing but class and spor
11/21/2005 | 11:03 PM
i wish you a fantastic 2006 Roger!
i'm going to see you at Wimbledon next year!