ATP Tour

Teenager Coric stuns Nadal

2014-10-24 21:14
Rafael Nadal (AFP)

Basel - Rafael Nadal suffered a 6-2, 7-6 (7/4) loss in the quarter-finals of the Swiss Indoors to teenager Borna Coric on Friday and then shut down his season to undergo appendix surgery.

The nine-time French Open champion and 14-time Grand Slam title winner confirmed he will have his appendix removed on November 3.

Given the circumstances the 28-year-old Spaniard said there was no logic in him competing at either next week's Paris Masters or the eight-man World Tour Finals in London from November 9.

"This is the day to say goodbye for the season," said Nadal. "It's the day to say I had a good first six months this year.

"But it was hard after that with back and (three-month summer) wrist problems and now the appendix. I'm not going to play Paris or London, I'm not competitive enough to do that.

"I need to do the surgery, I need to work on my back next week before the operation. Then I need five weeks to recover."

Top seed Roger Federer turned in another command performance, mowing down fifth-seeded Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov as the Swiss continued his bid for a sixth home trophy.

Federer posted a 7-6 (7/4), 6-2 win to set up a semi-final with the biggest server in the game, Ivo Karlovic after the eighth seed beat German Benjamin Becker 6-4, 6-4.

"It's like a penalty shootout playing him," said Federer of the leading ace-maker on the ATP this season with more than 1 000.

"You just pick a side on his serve and hope you are right. There's really no strategy."

Federer's win was his 65th of the season and lifted his record at the tournament to 54-9.

Nadal, who had been taking antibiotics to treat appendicitis since the Chinese swing of the tour earlier this month, said his goal is to have a month of training in December when his physical problems are mended.

"If I play the last two tournaments, I would not be competitive and would have no chance to win. It is better for me to recover. I hope to be back at the start of 2015 ready for anything."

Nadal had already announced earlier Friday that he was skipping next week's Paris Masters for "personal reasons."

"If Nadal does not come, it would be with a heavy heart. I think he will have surgery," said Paris Masters tournament director Guy Forget.

Nadal had secured one of the eight places in the World Tour Finals and his withdrawal now leaves four more spots to be filled with Novak Djokovic, Federer, Stanislas Wawrinka and Marin Cilic already guaranteed their places.

"It was tough the whole match, the whole tournament," admitted Nadal. "Every day I felt more tired. I tried to train and get fit - it was not possible.

"It's difficult to play and compete when you are not able to train for weeks in a row and when you are not ready to compete well and not in good shape physically.

"I was not competitive. I'm not the player who tries to be in the quarters - I try to win the tournaments."

Coric's win in just under one and three-quarter hours announced the 17-year-old Croatian as a name for the future.

The wildcard raced away with three straight breaks of Nadal, taking a 5-0 lead in the opening set.

"This is a huge surprise," said the world number 124. "I couldn't believe I got to 5-0 in the first set against Nadal. I was scared he would start a comeback. But I stayed very calm and I played well."

David Goffin, seeded seventh, knocked off London year-end finals contender Milos Raonic, with the fourth seed from Canada exiting 6-7 (3/7), 6-3, 6-4.

Goffin is having his best season, with a pair of ATP titles and four more at Challenger events.

"It's one of my nicest victories, if not the nicest," said Goffin. "It's really pleasing.

"I can't really comprehend what I've achieved since Wimbledon: more than 40 victories, two titles ... I think I'll only realize what I've achieved when I'm on holiday."

Goffin and Coric face off in Saturday's other semi-final.

Results from fifth day of the Swiss Indoors ATP tournament on Friday (x denotes seeded player):


David Goffin (BEL x7) bt Milos Raonic (CAN x4) 6-7 (3/7), 6-3, 6-4

Ivo Karlovic (CRO x8) bt Benjamin Becker (GER) 6-4, 6-4

Borna Coric (CRO) bt Rafael Nadal (ESP x2) 6-2, 7-6 (7/4)

Roger Federer (SUI x1) bt Grigor Dimitrov (BUL x5) 7-6 (7/4), 6-2

Read more on:    atp tour  |  tennis

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