Wimbledon 2014: Rafael Nadal fights back from a set down to beat Lukas Rosol
Last Updated: 26/06/14 5:18pm
Rafael Nadal avoided a repeat of his shock 2012 exit from Wimbledon as he clinched a 4-6 7-6 (8-6) 6-4 6-4 win over Lukas Rosol.
Rosol eliminated Nadal in the second round two years ago and looked as though he could be on course for a repeat result in 2014.
But the two-time champion fought back from a sluggish start to eventually book his place in the last 32 at the All England Club.
Rosol was up a set and a break at one point and also had a point to go two sets up, but once the world No 1 was back on level terms he rarely looked threatened.
I don't play for revenge. Every match is a different match. Today was another match and I tried to win. My goal was not Rosol.
"It was very important, the second set. To play against a player like Rosol, two sets down, big server, it would have been big, big danger.
"I don't play for revenge. Every match is a different match. Today was another match and I tried to win. My goal was not Rosol.
“My goal was to try to play well. It doesn't matter if it's Rosol or another player who beat me in the past or not. I think I had a good answer after big trouble between the first and second set."
Nadal had looked confident early on as he pulled out a range of passing shots as the first set went with serve early on before he faced two break points in the ninth game following a double fault.
The Spaniard saved them both with winners but later hit a low return into the net to hand Rosol a 5-4 lead and the chance to serve for the set, which the world No 52 did to love.
Rosol had won only two grand slam matches since his famous victory over Nadal two years ago, but looked confident as he continued to thunder down serves of 120 miles per hour.
The Spaniard then lost his own serve to love as Rosol, growing in confidence, held comfortably to move 4-2 ahead.
However, Nadal dug deep to rally back, moving 30-love up in the eighth game and breaking back after a long return handed the second seed three break points.
In the tie-break Rosol broke to lead 5-3, but Nadal responded to save a set point and then levelled the match following a double fault by Rosol.
Nadal forced a couple of break-point chances in game three of the third set, one after a superb return to flick over a drop shot, and seized a lead that he refused to let slip.
He maintained his momentum to break to love in the first game of set four, soon surging 3-1 up and not looking back as he set up a third-round clash with Mikhail Kukushkin.