Last Tuesday Karen Khachanov beat Fabio Fognini in the Round of 32 of the Rotterdam Open.
Fognini lost focus after an argument with the umpire over a call in the second set and then he had to ask a trainer for help in strapping up his leg below the knee.
Khachanov then would sail through the second set with two breaks of serve and an unforced error count of 36 by Fogninin only made things easier for his opponent.
It was expected to be a fantastic first round match. Both players were expected to reach the latter stages of this tournament. Khachanov lost to Fognini as part of a doubles team on Monday and it clearly fueled his desire for quick revenge.
Fabio Fognini Considers Rafael Nadal More Vulnerable Than Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic
Italian professional tennis player Fabio Fognini recently said that Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic are practically unplayable. He compared them to Rafael Nadal and considers him more vulnerable.
Fognini is among of the few players to have beaten Nadal on clay. He defeated Nadal 6-4, 6-2 in the semifinals of the Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters in April. The Italian would then beat Dušan Lajović 6-3, 6-4 for his first ATP Masters 1000 championship.
Per Fognini, Federer and Djokovic are on a different level than Nadal, who does present challenges, while not insurmountable ones.
“When Roger and Novak are at their top, it is very difficult,” Fognini told NRC. “They play so fast, give you no space.”
“With Rafa it is different, his game is more physical. He destroys you in the rally and mentally. But you can play against him, you can run.”
That Monte-Carlo Masters clash with Nadal was the best of Fognini’s career. He hasn’t won more since but he shared a simple and honest explanation why.
“I am sometimes lazy, that did not help me,” Fognini explained.
“If I wasn’t lazy, I would certainly have achieved more at tournaments. Sometimes I would rather sit on the couch than train or prepare for a tournament.”