Rafael Nadal: “I am satisfied the way that I played this Wimbledon” - UBITENNIS
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Rafael Nadal: “I am satisfied the way that I played this Wimbledon”



TENNIS WIMBLEDON 2014 – 1st of July. N. Kyrgios d. R. Nadal 7-6, 5-7, 7-6, 6-3. An interview with Rafael Nadal

Q. What are your thoughts on how Nick was able to beat you today?

RAFAEL NADAL: The thing is this surface, when you have an opponent that he decides to serve and to hit every ball very strong, you are in trouble.

I think that I didn’t play really bad. But that’s the game in this surface.

I think in the second and the third set I was better than him, but I was not able to convert that opportunities. And for the rest, I think he play better than me.

So, in general, talking about what you need to win in this surface, he did the things better than me.


Q. He’s No. 144 in the world and only 19 years old. What do you think of his future as a pro tennis player?

RAFAEL NADAL: I don’t know. I didn’t see him playing in other surfaces. Grass only three, four tournaments per year. But is obvious when you have a player that is able to serve that big, always advantage is so high.


Q. Before you came to Wimbledon you weren’t sure what your expectations of yourself were on grass. You fought through the first three rounds and fell in the fourth. How do you feel about what you did here in Wimbledon? Did you exceed your expectations at all?

RAFAEL NADAL: Oh, I am satisfied the way that I played this Wimbledon. Is true that my draw was not the best one. All the matches were uncomfortable against players that didn’t give you the opportunity to play a lot.

I fighted until the end in every single match. I was able to play some good tennis on this surface. That’s something that I was not able to do in the last two years.

But that’s the tennis. That’s the sport in this surface. I felt in a way I am even not angry today because I feel that I lost the match losing only one time my serve during the whole match. I created my opportunities.

But I was not able to read his serve during the whole match. At the end on grass, the resume is that. I was not able to read his serve. I was not able to put enough returns inside. We had one break each.

In the tiebreak he was able to serve better than me. So that’s an advantage. I could serve better on the tiebreaks. But 5 All in the second set in the tiebreak, second serve, net, inside for him, second serve big. Then he repeat the second serve with 140 miles the second serve.

You know, that’s happens when you have nothing to lose. You can play that way. Players who really play for being in the last rounds, think about win the titles, it’s not easy to create the second serve 114 5 All in the tiebreak, but that’s what happened today.

Congratulations to him. For me, beach (smiling). For me, I going to go to the beach in Mallorca.


Q. I know the disappointment is great, but how different a defeat is that to the previous two years, and how much better do you feel about yourself today than you did last year or after Rosol?

RAFAEL NADAL: Every year is different, no? Especially when you come from playing very bad here and you think you play better, the feelings is better. But I did not want to lose today. That’s obviously.

That’s fine. I try my best, as always I do when my physical performance give me the chance to try my best. Last two years I didn’t have that chance to try my best because my knee was not right to compete here.

But this year I felt the knee was right to compete here. I competed. I think I competed well. Was not enough today, but that’s it. That’s the sport. Opponent better than me. Life continues. I going to go to Mallorca, have some weeks off with the great weather there, enjoying with the family, with the friends some holidays.

It’s the only part of the year that I have holidays, and the right ones because the weather is great. After a few weeks I going to start practice again to prepare another important part of the season for me that will be in America.


Q. Earlier you said that tennis is very mental. It’s easy to play with nothing to lose. Could you talk about what it’s like for you to have your great run at the French Open and then to come here, be No. 1, past champion, what pressures do you feel?

RAFAEL NADAL: I didn’t play with lot of pressure. I won in the French. I am having a great season. I am playing well.

But I repeat. The surface here is dangerous and my draw was not easy. I played against a player that was not easy no one round. Today was not the right opponent again. He decided to serve so big and play so aggressive from the baseline.

During the whole match I had some chances. Not in the first set, but after the first set yes. Even in the fourth, first game, Love-30, two aces, two lines. That was it. I was not able to read the serve. I tried. Nothing bad.


Q. Given his age and experience, were you expecting him to crack at some stage? How surprised were you that he didn’t?

RAFAEL NADAL: He’s 19. When he has 20? Next year or this year?


Q. Next year.

RAFAEL NADAL: In the end, with 19 I was here already playing these kind of tournaments and competing well. Is now that the thing is very strange that the young players are coming so late.

19 years old is a perfect age to be on the tour and to play well. That’s what happened with all the great players in the past. Is nothing new.

When I was young, I was looking about the players that were great players, the top players, Lleyton, Roger, Ferrero, Moya, a lot of ones, Becker. They are there with this age. Is something that I always thought I had to be there at that age. With 19, I always thought I had to be with the tour if I want to be a professional tennis player.

For me age is not an issue over that.


Jack Draper Wins In Stuttgart, Potentially Faces Andy Murray in Round Two



Jack Draper – ATP Monaco di Baviera 2024 (foto via Twitter @atptour)

Britain’s Jack Draper tight first round win headlined the opening day’s results at the Boss Open 2024 in Stuttgart – and possibly faces a second-round match with Andy Murray who takes on Marcos Giron tomorrow.

Less than 24 hours from the last ball being hit at Roland Garros, the ATP Tour had already switched surfaces onto the grass, and 22-year-old Draper was well tested but ultimately came through in two tie-breakers over Sebastian Ofner.

The sixth seed’s 7-6, 7-6 win contained just one break of serve each, both coming in the second set, as serve dominated proceedings on the faster grass courts in Germany.

While the Austrian won 75% on his first serve, Draper won a whopping 89% behind his first delivery as well as hitting eight aces. These kind of service stats will surely take him far during the grass court season.

“I thought it was a really good match,” Eurosport quoted Draper saying after his match. 
“Both of us played really clean tennis, executing really well.
“When it came down to it, I’m glad I competed really well and got over the line – it’s good to be back on the grass as well.”

There were also wins for Germany’s Yannick Hanfmann who won 6-3, 6-3 over wildcard Henri Squire, while compatriot Dominik Koepfer won in three sets over China’s Zhizhen Zhang 4-6, 7-6, 7-6. 

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Carlos Alcaraz Still Owns A Magical Racket



The legend of Carlos Alcaraz and his magical racket lives on.

The 21-year-old Spaniard executed one magical shot after another with his racket and legs  Sunday afternoon in the French Open final. That bit of magic spelled defeat for Germany’s Alexander Zverev.

This was a final to remember, one of the great matches of all the Grand Slams. It just wasn’t in the cards for the 26-year-old Zverev to finally win a Grand Slam title.


Both players seemed to play a game of “he had it and then he didn’t.”

Alcaraz appeared to have everything under control in the first set, but Zverev rushed through the second set and then made a comeback from 5-2 down in the third set to win five straight games.

Zverev had everything going for him when he started the fourth set with a two-set advantage. It appeared that all the 6-6 Zverev had to do was to continue playing his masterful game of big serves and mighty ground strokes.

But Zverev couldn’t get started in the fourth set until he was down 4-0. So much for a smooth and easy ride to a Grand Slam title. By then, the magic of Alcaraz was heating up.


Zverev still had his chances, even when he fell behind 2-1 in the fifth set. He had to feel pretty good about his chances when he took a triple break point lead against Alcaraz’s serve and appeared ready to even the set at 2-2. Even after Carlos came up with a winner to bring the  game score to double break point.

Zverev still was ready to even the entire match.

That’s when everything seemed to go haywire for the German, while all the while, Alcaraz was able to repeatedly come up with his magical shots as the Spaniard made critical shots that looked almost impossible to make.


Everything for Zverev was lost in the magical racket of Alcaraz.

What was then initially called a game-ending Alcaraz double fault and a 2-2 deadlock quicky reversed itself and Alcaraz stayed alive by winning the next three points while taking a 3-1 advantage.

Zverev did get back to a 3-2 deficit and had a break point in the sixth game, but that was it for the hopes of Zverev. The last two games went rather easily in favor of Alcaraz to wrap up a 6-3, 2-6, 5-7, 6-1, 6-2 victory for Alcaraz.

That moved the Spaniard to a higher level of success on the ATP Tour. He became the youngest man to win Grand Slam titles on all of the different surfaces, clay, grass and hard courts.

Carlos Alcaraz and his magical racket appear to be headed for greatness.

James Beck was the 2003 winner of the USTA National Media Award  for print media. A 1995 MBA graduate of The Citadel, he can be reached at Jamesbecktennis@gmail.com. 

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Tsitsipas Brothers Hit With Trio Of Fines At French Open



Stefanos Tsitsipas and his brother Petros have been fined more than 20,000 euros for multiple violations of the coaching rules at this year’s French Open. 

The brothers received a financial penalty during three different matches that they played in. Two of those were in the second and third rounds of the men’s doubles tournament. Furthermore, Stefanos was also penalised during his singles quarter-final match against Carlos Alcaraz, which he lost in straight sets. According to French newspaper L’Equipe, all three of those fines were issued as a result of coaching rules being broken.

Ironically, coaching is allowed during matches at the French Open but certain rules must be followed. ‘Verbal’ coaching can only be issued from the coaches and their team if they are sitting in the designated player’s box. Instructions must be limited to a few words and can only be given if the player is in the same half of the court as their coach. Although non-verbal coaching is allowed regardless of what side the player is on. Finally, players can’t start a conversation with their coach unless it is during a medical break, a bathroom break or when their opponent is changing clothes.

However, the Tsitsipas brothers have been found in violation of these rules, which is likely due to their animated father in the stands who is also their coach. Apostolos Tsitsipas has been given coaching violations in the past at other events, including the 2022 Australian Open. 

The value of the fines are €4,600 and €9,200 for the Tsitsipas brothers in the doubles, as well as an additional €7,400 just for Stefanos in the singles. In total, the value of their fines is €21,200. However, the penalty is unlikely to have an impact on the duo whose combined earnings for playing in this year’s French Open amount to roughly €495,000. 

So far in the tournament, the highest single fine to be issued this year was against Terence Atmane who hit a ball out of frustration that struck a fan in the stands. Atmane, who later apologised for his actions, managed to avoid getting disqualified from the match. Instead, he was fined €23,000. 

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