Mutua Madrid Open 2014 Interviews. Rafael Nadal: “The ranking is lying a lot of times. The ranking is not fair a lot of times.” - UBITENNIS
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Mutua Madrid Open 2014 Interviews. Rafael Nadal: “The ranking is lying a lot of times. The ranking is not fair a lot of times.”

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TENNIS Mutua Madrid Open 2014 – An interview with Rafael Nadal.

 

Q. You’re in a little bit weird month because it’s been a time that you didn’t go in Monte Carlo on a Friday, Barcelona you left on a Friday. You’ve got a lot of the time to rest. Do you think that’s good for Madrid?

RAFAEL NADAL: No. It’s not good for me. The good thing is when you’ve been winning it’s good for you. You have momentum and you can keep doing things well.

Well, when you lose, you have a hard moment, you have more doubts. Well, yes, I have a little bit time. I need more time to move, choose where to strike the ball.

But no, no, that’s what happened. I’ve already said it several times. I didn’t pretend to win Monte Carlo 12 times or Barcelona 12 times. Maybe that may not be normal. This is the reality of the situation.

Maybe it’s normal to lose three times on the quarterfinals. Maybe what’s not normal is what happened during the past nine years.

But we’ll be here to fight and to try to play even better. I don’t think I have to change many things. I think I can change very small things, and the change can be quite drastic and quite big.

That’s what I’m working on right now.

 

Q. These small changes that you’re talking about, what do you think they are? What are the changes you’re talking about?

RAFAEL NADAL: Well, they’re pretty simple. In the end, tennis doesn’t have a lot of capacity of analysis. It’s not a really complicated sport. It’s pretty simple. I have to move a little bit better on the court. I have to be better in my drive with a little bit more decision.

I think the backhand, I’ve been doing it pretty well. I just need a little bit more authority when I’ve been training with my drive. Just a little bit more authority on my drive. The backhand was working well. If I work on my drive well, the backhand is going to be better on its own.

I just need to win. I think that in Barcelona I had a good opportunity. I think I was pretty close. I think that in many moments I deserved to do it, but that tennis is a fair game. The game all the time was on my side.

So, you know, I was playing    my attitude was pretty well. So I think I cannot have a better attitude than what I had in Monte Carlo, for example. The attitude I wanted to win in Monte Carlo, it’s not something about wanting ir or not wanting it. It’s about momentum. I’m feeling better.

I feel really good to play here. It’s a very special tournament for me, and the energy this tournament gives me is something a little bit different to others.

I’ve been training trying to do things properly, as I’ve been doing always. I hope that it just works out.

 

Q. I don’t know what does Madrid have, but in the past editions nobody managed to win the title again. In your case you could do it this time. You have a third opportunity. Do you think it’s because people normally don’t win twice?

RAFAEL NADAL: No, no, it’s not because of nothing. To repeat is really difficult in every single place. We’re talking about tournaments we have the top players every single year. It’s obvious when the best players are working. It’s really tough that the same guy wins from year to year.

You look at the history of our sport, it’s something that be doesn’t happen very often in our sport. It’s true the last few years some players have been winning tournaments year after year.

If we look at the history we can see that few players have been able to do this year after year, and that just shows how difficult the sport is in general.

In this case, in tennis, many matches are decided in a small points. Well, sometimes the balls always fall on the side of a guy. It’s something special that has happened several times during the past years.

It’s happened several times for some players, but it’s not very logical. It’s not very logical what happens in the last five, six years that the same players have been playing for the really important tournaments.

This can happen three times, but during so many years it’s something pretty different. I think that these things don’t happen many times during the history.

 

Q. I would like to talk about your defeat in Australia. What did that leave on you? Physically talking because a problem in your back that you couldn’t train for a week, or mentally because of the fact of not being able to win?

RAFAEL NADAL: The defeat in Australia is the past. We don’t have to talk anymore about Australia. It’s gone. We will go back in 2015 to try to be well there again and try to compete well in Australia.

Just another defeat with a problem. That maybe leaves you afterwards a little bit more insecurity to that loss. Because you always have that moment that you’re just dreaming about it and then you have a problem.

But this is sport. You know, the sport is just to accept, to feel done, and wake up again and stand up and try to recover.

You know, when you compete at this level, when you’re playing at the limit, sometimes you crash. You crash against the wall.

All the crashes you get during your career, you just have to survive. You just to have try not to be a mortal kick. I don’t think that’s the case in Australia.

After Australia it’s been a little bit difficult for me to get back in the rhythm for the competition, but also there are some other things over there.

In Australia where I was playing well, after Australia I stop for three weeks, then I played Rio. Even though I win Rio, I didn’t play with really good feelings. I played the tournament, but doesn’t matter. In the middle I have to leave because they have to treat my back, put something on my back, syringes.

That happened in Rio and then I cannot train after 12 days. So, you know, there I was a little bit close. And all of this in general, well you create    you need continuity in order to play well.

In Indian Wells I managed to play well against Dolgopolov. I tried to win that match. These things happen.

We went over it and just have to work on it. You have to start from zero.

In Miami, was that really positive tournament for me.

Afterwards, I lost two matches here in Spain and I think I could have won.

Ferrer was much better than me, especially in the second set. The first set was really close. I think it’s a match that I should have won, but I didn’t.

In this case I have to work for here, for Madrid. That’s what I’ve been doing. I been working since I lost in Barcelona. I tried to train well to come here. If things don’t come out well, we will go to Rome; if things don’t work out there, we will go to Paris.

That’s everything. You have to continue and continue and continue, and think that things are going to work out for you. That’s what I’m going to try to do all of these days.

 

Q. These two defeats, do they create on you more doubts?

RAFAEL NADAL: You know, they create you doubts. That’s what happens in the defeat. That’s why if someone tells you the opposite he is lying to you. The defeats create doubts. Not more be will to play. What creates will to play is that you’re feeling well on the court.

When you come from tough moments like this or injuries or whatever, you don’t manage to be on the positive line, well, you know, you then come back with a little more intensity to try to be back as soon as possible.

I just to have try to be back on that line. That’s what I’m trying to do right now.

 

Q. Are you surprised to see Andy Murray ranked No. 8? And you know what it’s like to recover from injuries. Do you think he’ll be able to come back after his back surgery and get back to the top of the game?

RAFAEL NADAL: You know, the ranking is lying a lot of times. The ranking is not fair a lot of times. Having one year ranking when you get injury for a while, when you lose just a few tournaments or you have some problems and you are not able to play your 100%, it’s very easy to lose ranking.

So it’s not an issue for a player Andy that already won Olympics, Grand Slam, Masters 1000s. The ranking probably is not his priority. It’s to play well and have the chance to win the most important tournaments and feel himself healthy and competitive.

I don’t have any doubt that he’s fighting again for the best tournaments of the world. It’s always natural and normal that after an injury it’s tough to be back on the top of your game very soon.

So for me, it’s not an issue. He’s there. He will be fighting for the best tournaments and he will be in the top positions of the ranking if he wants to be or if he’s able to do.

When you get injury and you have some physical problems and you are not able to play all the tournaments at your 100%, then I repeat: having the ranking just one year on the calendar, you know, it’s not enough to be at the top if you were not able to play all the tournaments at your 100%.

 

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Liam Broady On Why He Wore Rainbow Laces During His Australian Open Match

Following his first round defeat, the Brit spoke about why he believes it is important to speak out in support of the LGBT community.

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Image via https://twitter.com/the_LTA/status/

It is sometimes the small gestures which go a long way and Liam Broady showed that during his first round match at the Australian Open.

 

Taking to the John Cain Arena for his night-time clash against Nick Kyrgios, the qualifier embarked upon a situation he had never experienced before with a boisterous crowd cheering on their home player. At times the atmosphere resembled that a football match with fans drinking beer and chanting Christiano Roinaldo’s ‘siu’ celebration. The reason as to why they were doing that particular chant was unclear.

Broady ended up falling 6-4, 6-4, 6-3, to Kyrgios who will next play the formidable Daniil Medvedev. Throughout the match the world No.128 was wearing rainbow laces and he did so for a special reason.

“I just kind of wanted to send the support. I know obviously within men’s tennis — is it a taboo? I don’t think it’s really a taboo, but I’ve seen questions before about why there aren’t any openly gay men on the tour, and I just wanted to kind of voice my support in that kind of general area,” Broady explained during his press conference.
“And the LGBTQ community, I mean, a lot of those guys have given me a lot of support throughout my career and have been there since day one, so I kind of wanted to give a thank you in my own sort of way.”

The Rainbow Laces initiative was created by LGBT charity Stonewall and initially marketed specifically towards football’s Premier League before later expanding into other sports. The idea is to get players to wear rainbow laces in order to raise awareness of LGBT representation within sport.

https://twitter.com/the_LTA/status/1483379917337534465

Tennis is renowned for having some of the most formidable LGBT athletes over the years with the likes of pioneers such as Billie Jean King and Martina Navratilova who were among some of the first to speak openly about their sexuality. However, on the men’s Tour it is somewhat different. There are currently no openly gay players and only a small handful in the past. Although most of those players, such as Brian Vahaly, came out after retiring from the sport.

“I saw that the first openly gay footballer just came out in Australia (Josh Cavallo) a month or two ago. And it’s difficult, right? I mean, it’s a big thing to do and at the end of the day in the 21st century, it’s pretty rubbish that people don’t feel like they can be openly gay. It’s quite sad, really,” Broady continued.
“Hopefully I will help raise awareness for it and if there are people in the locker rooms and you kind of, you don’t want to force them to come out, you know, especially if they don’t want to. It’s their choice.’
“So you just got to try and support in the way you can and just let them know that everything’s okay.”

It is not the first time the 28-year-old has spoken out about LGBT rights. In 2018 he criticized Margaret Court who likened gay-rights activists to Adolf Hitlef in terms of what she claims is ‘propaganda.’ Court has a history of making anti-LGBT remarks despite insisting that she has nothing against gay people.

Broady says he doesn’t personally know of any gay player on the Tour. Although if there was, he assumed that it would be known because the sport is a ‘pretty leaky ship’ when it comes to having private details revealed online.

On Monday the Australian Open will launch their first ever Pride Day at the tournament.

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Australian Open: Pablo Carreno Busta Through But Fabio Fognini Stunned

Busta has booked his place in the second round at Melbourne Park for the sixth year in a row.

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Pablo Carreno Busta - image via https://twitter.com/SuperTennisTv/

On day one of the Australian Open, Spanish ace Pablo Carreno Busta sealed an efficient straight-sets win to take his place in the second round.

 

The Spaniard was no match for Argentinian qualifier Tomas Etcheverry coming through 6-1, 6-2, 7-6 (7-2).

The 30-year-old from Giron sailed through the opening set that included two breaks in the fourth and sixth game.

Etcheverry, who won three matches to qualify for the Australian Open, improved in the second set.

However, it wasn’t enough as Carreno-Busta flicked through the gears breaking his younger opponent in the third and seventh game to seal the set.

In the third, the 2017 and 2020 US Open semi-finalist took an early break of serve, only to be pegged back by Etcheverry who forced a tie-break.

It wasn’t to be for the 22-year-old though as Carreno-Busta turned up the heat with some big groundstrokes to move into round two.

Next up for the world number 21 is Dutchman Tallon Griekspoor who thrashed a poor Fabio Fognini in straight sets.

The out of sorts Italian was beaten 6-1, 6-4, 6-4.

Having lost in the first round of the US Open in September, the former world number world number is nine is in danger of slipping outside the top 40.

Having shown much promise to win a first Masters 1000 in Monte Carlo back in 2019, the husband of former US Open champion Flavia Pennetta, looks desperately short of motivation and confidence.

Fognini is yet to go beyond the fourth-round of a major, and at 34 time is running out for him to mine the potential that made him one of the sports best juniors growing up alongside Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic.

Elsewhere, former Australian Open star Lucas Pouille, was knocked out in round one by fellow Frenchman Corentin Moutet.

Wildcard Pouille has endured a glut of injuries since making the semi-finals at Melbourne Park three years ago.

The 27-year-old has now fallen to 159 in the world. 

Pouille made a bright start to take the opening set 6-3, but his lack of fitness and confidence soon showed, as he lost the following sets 6-3, 6-4, 6-3.

Czech Jiri Vesley, also slumped out to American wildcard Stefan Kozlov 7-5, 6-3, 6-4.

He will face seventh seed Matteo Berrettini next.

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Cameron Norrie Puzzled By Australian Open Defeat

It was a bad day at the office for the British number one.

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Cameron Norrie ad Indian Wells 2021 (Credits: @BNPPARIBASOPEN on Twitter)

Cameron Norrie is finding it hard to pinpoint where it all went wrong for him in his first round match at the Australian Open.

 

The 12th seed could only win seven games against Sebastian Korda as he crashed out 6-3, 6-0, 6-4, after just over 100 minutes of play. It is the third time in four appearances that Norrie has fallen in the first round at Melbourne Park but last year he did manage to reach the third round. Against his American rival, he hit 29 unforced errors compared to 23 winners and was broken five times.

I had a week off to prepare, prepared as well as I could, and I was just slow, I was missing routine backhands, which I never miss,” Norrie said during his press conference.
“I honestly can’t put a finger on it. I just need to get better and improve. Lots to work on.’
“Any time I had a chance to kind of come back, he (Korda) served his way out of it. And on the bigger points he was much better than me. I didn’t play well in any big points today.”

It has been a far from smooth start to 2022 for the 26-year-old who also suffered disappointment at the ATP Cup earlier this month. In the team tournament he lost all three of his singles matches to Alexander Zverev, Taylor Fritz and Felix Auger-Aliassime. Zverev is the only one of the trio currently ranked higher than him.

Perhaps the most concerning aspect of Norrie’s latest defeat is the fact he seemed perplexed about why he played the way he did. Asked by one journalist if he was possibly suffering any lingering affects from catching COVID-19 during the festive period he replied ‘No, I think I prepared as well as I can, and I felt fine physically, fine mentally.’

Norrie was one of the breakthrough stars last year on the ATP Tour when he raced up the world rankings. He featured in six Tour finals across three different surfaces and won the biggest title of his career at the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells. The stellar season earned him a place at the ATP Finals as a reserve and he even played two matches following the withdrawal of Stefanos Tsitsipas due to injury.

“I don’t know why I played the way I did today. I was feeling good physically,” he said. “Yeah, I played a lot of matches (last year) but this is what we (tennis players) are paid to do and just not good enough. I just need to raise my standards, practice, matches, and execute a lot better.”

Of course, credit has to be given to Korda, who is making his debut at Melbourne Park. The American had a far from ideal preparation for the tournament after testing positive for COVID-19 which forced him to withdraw from two warm-up events.

21-year-old Korda has now beaten a top 20 player on six separate occasions. He will play France’s Corentin Moutet in the second round.

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