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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The Argentine, who would not have made the eight-man draw if four of the top five players had not withdrawn, ended Roger's 35-match winning streak with a come-from-behind 6-7 (4) 6-7 (11) 6-2 6-1 7-6 (3).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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11/23/2005 | 07:22 PM
It was most unfortunate that you could not win...but watching the match I was very proud of the way you played, because you wouldn't give up even when your physical strength wasn't with you:)))

Have a good long rest and we'll see you next year....!!!!
11/23/2005 | 07:04 PM
I agree with most of what Audrey wrote, but I was very disappointed, not devestated by Roger's loss. After all, it was remarkable he was in the final at all and Nalbandian has been in form lately.

But it would have been a happy ending for us fans if Ro
11/23/2005 | 05:50 PM
I am sure that I speak for all Roger's fans when I say that I was devastated by his loss and even though he was his usual gracious self in congratulating Nalbandian I know in his heart Roger must have been devastated too. But the way Roger played and the
11/23/2005 | 05:17 PM
Hello Roger him story that when I saw that you lose the end I put myself very sad, si feel much pain, but you continue being for my the best one of all, in my heart you are the Master, if it had not been by that injury I am sure that you had won, now it
11/23/2005 | 03:04 PM
1 word want to tell you "you're my pride"
11/23/2005 | 01:46 PM
Dear Roger,i am sorry that you losted but yuo steel are the best player.In my heart you are a winner.
11/23/2005 | 11:50 AM
c'mon roger!
u know,at the ending of the match, people loving u all over the world were much more sad when they saw ur disappointed face.:-(
u've been the greatest tennis player in the history,u needn't to be so overcritical to yourself, i just wanna s
11/23/2005 | 07:09 AM
u were awesome roger......i mean u playd really well.....u rokd da match but one cant change wat destiny haz for us....if u lost dat match it wuznt a big deal....u rok big time n v still luv u alot.......go home, take a lot of rest n b perfectly fit n hea
11/23/2005 | 06:56 AM
Dear Roger

Don't be sad, you were simply fantastic! It was a miracle and lots of incredible hard work that you even got that far!

And I think this shaped your legend as one of the very greatest even more than if you had won..! You are a role-model e
11/23/2005 | 06:42 AM
My dear Roger the great,

I am very sad about your Masters Cup final lose, but at the same time I am very proud of you. You did your best, kept on fighting till the end, and I always love you for that. We all know that you were not physically fit, sti