Monday, May 21, 2012

Rain puts off Novak-Nadal showdown

Updated May 21, 2012 08:17:26

Heavy rain caused Sunday's eagerly anticipated Rome Masters final between defending champion Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal to be postponed until Monday.

"The conditions for play are not suitable. The final is postponed until Monday at 1200 (2000 AEST)," said tournament director Sergio Palmieri.

Earlier, the women's final had been interrupted for over two hours due to the rain before Maria Sharapova successfully defended her title by beating Li Na 4-6, 6-4, 7-6 (7-5).

Angry spectators through plastic bottles onto the court in protest after the men's final was postponed.

For Nadal, the final is a chance to get revenge for last year's event, when Djokovic beat him in straight sets, 6-4, 6-4, on the clay in Rome.

It is also a chance to rebound after his shock quarter-final loss to Spain's Fernando Verdasco on the controversial "blue clay" in Madrid, and push to regain the number two world ranking from rival Roger Federer.

For Djokovic, it is an opportunity to defend his title and gain the psychological advantage over Nadal on the Spaniard's favourite surface leading into next week's French Open.

Nadal will be seeking his seventh French Open at Roland Garros, while Djokovic is yet to win in Paris.


Tags: sport, tennis, italy

First posted May 21, 2012 08:17:26

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