No. 2 Rafael Nadal has forced a fifth set for his second consecutive match at Wimbledon, winning the fourth set 6-2 over No. 33 Philipp Petzschner.
The fourth set completely turned on its head early on, when Nadal called out the trainer for the second time in the match, to work on his right knee. The move killed all of Petzschner’s momentum, and Nadal quickly broke the German on his next service game.
Only Nadal knows for sure how much of his decision to call the trainer was tactical, but it can fairly be said that his movement never looked impaired either before or after the injury timeout.
Nadal also was questioned by chair umpire Cedric Mourier about possible illegal coaching of Nadal by his coach and uncle, Toni Nadal, and eventually gave a clear signal to his uncle to knock off whatever it was he had been doing.
To epitomize just how complete his collapse has been, Petzschner lost set point with a double fault.
Petzschner is known as one of the game’s biggest chokers, so to see him blow this lead would hardly be surprising.
Because turnabout is fair play, Petzschner has now called the trainer himself, and is now getting his left hip massaged.