Iconic Battles: Fabio Fognini vs Rafael Nadal | A Glimpse into US Open History

In the realm of tennis there are matchups that have made an impression, in history. These are the battles that captivate us and leave us in awe. One such unforgettable encounter is the clash between Fabio Fognini vs Rafael Nadal US Open in 2015.

In this article we will dive into this showdown exploring its historical significance, the exceptional skills of the players involved and the anticipation surrounding their return, to the renowned Arthur Ashe Stadium. Come along with us as we relive the thrilling drama and excitement of this match.

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A Clash for the Ages

Soon as the draw, for the 2015 US Open was revealed there was one match that caught everyones attention – Fabio Fognini vs Rafael Nadal. The excitement surrounding this clash was undeniable. It had reason to be. It was during this tournament in 2015 that Nadal experienced one of the defeats of his career. He had let slip a two set lead against Fognini leaving the crowd at Arthur Ashe Stadium in disbelief.


This defeat marked a milestone for Nadal as it was the time he had ever succumbed from such a dominant position in a Grand Slam match. It put an end to a streak of 152 victories, in similar situations. Now in the day they were set to face each other again on that very same court bringing back memories of that unforgettable encounter.

The Players: Fognini and Nadal

Before we dive deeper into the historic clash of 2015, let’s take a closer look at the two protagonists.

Fabio Fognini

Ranked currently as the player, in the world Fognini may have slipped a bit in the rankings but he still possesses the skills of a Top 10 player. Fognini is known for his shot making ability. Has a unique style of play. When hes on form his powerful and precise shots can effortlessly pass by opponents like laser beams. What sets him apart is his flair on the court making him an unpredictable and thrilling player to watch.


Despite Nadal having a two set advantage in their encounter he was well aware of the danger that Fognini presented. The Italian maestro had the ability to completely change the course of any match, with his captivating play.

Rafael Nadal

Rafael Nadal, a tennis legend, in his right has a record of winning 22 Grand Slam championships. Despite facing injuries he continues to be a favorite on any type of playing surface. When it comes to competing against Fognini Nadal has shown dominance with a 13 4 all time record and an incredible 7 1 advantage on courts.


What sets Nadal apart is his resilience. Back in 2015 he had to withdraw from the Wimbledon semifinals due to a tear. He bounced back and had an exceptional season, in the Grand Slam events, including the US Open. When not at his physical condition Nadal knows how to navigate the demanding journey of competing in Grand Slam tournaments.

Nadal’s Remarkable Comeback

Nadal’s abdominal injury was a significant concern leading up to the 2015 US Open. He highlighted that it continued to trouble him, particularly when trying to generate speed and power on his serve. However, during his opening match against Rinky Hijikata, the four-time US Open champion displayed sheer brilliance on his serves. A staggering 77% of his first serve points found their mark, and he even reached speeds of up to 122 mph on the radar gun. What’s more astonishing is that he achieved these numbers while holding back on his serve’s velocity.

Nadals exceptional serving performance was accompanied by his ability to maintain his service games. Throughout the match he successfully held serve in 17 out of 18 opportunities. His proficiency, in serving was evident as he flawlessly executed three serve and volley plays against his opponent. It’s clear that Fognini shouldn’t anticipate serves from Nadal, in their matchup. The Italian player will need to step up and take calculated risks when returning Nadals serves.

Fognini’s Hope for Redemption

Looking beyond their 2015 encounter, several factors offer optimism for a potential Fognini upset. Despite enduring a streak of 12 consecutive losses to Top 10 opponents, Fognini’s most recent victory against such a high-caliber player was none other than Nadal, which occurred in the semifinals of the 2019 Monte Carlo Masters. This win serves as a testament to Fognini’s ability to shine on the grand stage.

Furthermore, Fognini’s recent performance in the tournament’s opening match showcased his resilience. He faced a formidable challenge from Aslan Karatsev, recovering from a difficult 1-6, 5-7 situation to ultimately secure a victory with a score of 6-4, 6-1, 6-4. This remarkable achievement not only propelled him to the next round but also placed him in prestigious company alongside tennis legends Roger Federer and Andy Murray, both of whom have achieved 10 career victories after being two sets down, the highest among active male players.

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Wrapping it Up!

As the day of the iconic clash between Fabio Fognini vs Rafael Nadal at the US Open approaches, tennis fans around the world are brimming with excitement. The echoes of their 2015 showdown still resonate, and the prospect of witnessing another epic battle on the hallowed courts of Arthur Ashe Stadium is enthralling. Nadal, with his indomitable spirit and remarkable comeback, stands as a formidable favorite. However, Fognini, armed with his unique style and a history of upsetting the odds, presents a tantalizing challenge. The story of this match, from the shocking upset of 2015 to the present day, is a testament to the enduring drama and unpredictability of tennis.


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