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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The Argentine, who would not have made the eight-man draw if four of the top five players had not withdrawn, ended Roger's 35-match winning streak with a come-from-behind 6-7 (4) 6-7 (11) 6-2 6-1 7-6 (3).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 | 01:27 PM
Hi, Federer! First of all I'd like to congratulate and compliment you about your performance in Shanghai tournament. It's not in vain the amount of fans you have all over the world. You did much more than we expected, because of your injury. There were ma
11/22/2005 | 01:24 PM
Hi, Federer! First of all I'd like to congratulate and compliment you about your performance in Shanghai tournament. It's not in vain the amount of fans you have all over the world. You did much more than we expected, because of your injury. There were ma
11/22/2005 | 01:24 PM
Hi, Federer! First of all I'd like to congratulate and compliment you about your performance in Shanghai tournament. It's not in vain the amount of fans you have all over the world. You did much more than we expected, because of your injury. There were ma
11/22/2005 | 01:23 PM
Hey Roger,

Ispiring stuff in Shanghai. Its performances like these that make us proud even in defeat.

Keep rocking.
11/22/2005 | 01:14 PM
Hi, Federer! First of all I'd like to congratulate and compliment you about your performance in Shanghai tournament. It's not in vain the amount of fans you have all over the world. You did much more than we expected, because of your injury. There were ma
11/22/2005 | 12:14 PM
hey Roger buddy!It wasn't really ur fault tat u lost.u were injured and every1 knows tat.Next time you'll get nalbandian 4 gud!!He'll be sorry he ever defeated u!!!!

kanwal
11/22/2005 | 12:14 PM
hey roger,
great year man.........don't mind the loss it was for people to just remember that sometimes the law of averages does catch up......
wish you good luck for the coming year...take a good break and come back better......
dharani
11/22/2005 | 11:57 AM
Federer, Nalbandian and Safin are my favourites so two of them playing in one of the most thrilling battles is great! Too bad that Roger had to lose this one, usually he never gives 6-5 30-0 away. Hopefully he gets angry about it so he will make 2006 into
11/22/2005 | 11:39 AM
Roger,
Nalbandian played really perfect, only your natural talent could extend the final so much...Thanks for a wonderful tournament and I am sure you are going to break all records in 2006 and put Nalbandian in his place next time you meet him...(Pleas
kriko
11/22/2005 | 11:24 AM
El jugador número 1 del mundo explicó su problemas en el tobillo derecho: "Obviamente antes del partido él (Nalbandian) sabía que yo no estaba al cien por ciento, debido a mi pie. En el 4-0 del quinto set, pensé que todo se acababa en cinco minutos. Pero