Rafael Nadal: ‘I lost to Roger Federer and thought it was my last Wimbledon final’

Seeking the fifth consecutive Wimbledon trophy in 2007, Roger Federer went all the way to match Bjorn Borg’s record! In the title match 12 months earlier, Federer took down his closest rival Rafael Nadal in four sets, with the world’s leading players setting another clash in July 2007 that went down to the wire. Nadal defeated Federer in the Roland Garros final a few weeks earlier, chasing the “Channel Slam” in London but having to settle with the runner-up spot for the second straight year despite giving his everything. After three hours and 45 minutes, Federer clinched a 7-6, 4-6, 7-6, 2-6, 6-2 triumph to write the record books and extend his winning streak at the All England Club.

Roger fended off seven out of 11 break chances, prevailed in the closing stages of sets one and three and produced his best tennis when it mattered the most in the decider to defend the title. Nadal had a slight advantage in the more advanced exchanges, which was not enough to keep him safe in the final set despite early chances that could have sent him in front. Regarding the clash, Nadal said it was a crushing defeat at that moment, giving his best and still finishing empty-handed in what could have been his last Wimbledon final. Rafa suffered a break on Federer’s third break chance in the opener’s game two from 40-0 up and pulled it back at 1-3.

At Wimbledon 2007, Roger Federer defeated Rafael Nada in five sets.

The returners took only six points by the end of the set, and they reached a tie break that Federer claimed 9-7 for a massive boost. The Swiss saved break chances in the second set’s sixth game before the Spaniard grabbed a break at 5-4 with a backhand down the line winner to level the overall score and improve his chances. Nadal fended off a break opportunity at the beginning of the third set, and they both served well until another tie break. Roger won it 7-3 to forge two sets to one advantage, hoping to emerge at the top in set number four. Instead, Nadal started all over and raced into a 4-0 advantage, playing on a high level to force a decider after dropping seven points in four service games. Federer had to dig deep on serve early in the fifth set, repelling four break chances and drawing momentum that carried him home. The Swiss rattled off the final four games from 2-2 with breaks in games six and eight to seal the deal and join Bjorn Borg on five consecutive Wimbledon crowns. 

“It hurt a lot to lose the 2007 Wimbledon final; I was ready to win it that year, and I thought that could have been my last chance to lift the Wimbledon trophy,” Rafael Nadal said.

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