Talk Tennis

Talk Tennis (http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/index.php)
-   General Pro Player Discussion (http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/forumdisplay.php?f=13)
-   -   Interview with Nadal (http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=167813)

Benhur 11-20-2007 07:23 PM

Interview with Nadal
 
Interview with Rafael Nadal

http://www.elpais.com/articulo/depor...lpepidep_1/Tes

November 20, 2007

Rafael Nadal (Manacor, Mallorca; 1986) sprints while sending 10-meter passes with a soccer ball along the long hallways of Qi Zhong stadium. Then he goes inside the playerís area and begins a kind of juggling act with Roger Federer. Nothing suggests that the Swiss has just beaten him 6-4 y 6-1 in the semifinals of the Masters Tournament. Nadal, who says he has had the best season ever, takes the ball and starts tapping it with his feet. ďYouíre better than Maradona!" says Federer. Then, the number two in the world says hi to the Chinese driver of his Mercedes, calling him by his name, and gives us an interview.

Question: Youíve played this entire year without a lot of physical training for endurance.

Answer: I have never said it, because it sounds like an excuse. I donít like to talk about injuries. I do physical training everyday, except I canít run. But now, during the pre-season, I am going to try. Ever since my foot injury in 205, I am very careful and I avoid running. And that shows. I need to get my physical form as I play matches, and itís hard because I don't have a good foundation.

Q. What have you done to counter this problem?

R. I swim, I run inside the pool to get endurance, I do rowing, bicycle, the elliptic machineÖ But from experience, I know it does not replace running. It does not give you the same kind of confidence. Itís hard.

Itís a matter of whether you dare to push down. I used to manage a very high ball, very long, the best one I had. Unconsciously, my game has been adapting to these little problems. Now I donít do it so aggressively, but with shorter steps, trying not to force it so much. Sometimes itís an obstacle. Psychologically, you feel squashed. You say to yourself: ****! If only I could be physically like I was in 2005 Ė now that I can play tennis so much better!

Q. Youíve always played with the number one spot in mind. But now, Novak Djokovic threatens to take away your number two spot.

A. Iíve always worried more about whoís behind me than whoís in front. Federer has always been far ahead. At a certain point, the media started to say that I could be number one by the end of the year. For a while I was ahead in the annual race, and he had a lot of points to defend. The key match was the Wimbledon final.

P. What happened in the locker room after that final? There are some rumors going aroundÖ

A. I kept myself together pretty well during the ceremony, I didnít want to act like a child. But once I arrived in the locker room , I sat down, and naturally, after losing the final of the tournament that thrills me the most, against the number one player, and having had lots of opportunities, I started to cry Ė out of disappointment, sadness. It was the only match where I cried afterwards last year, and one of the few where Iíve done it in my entire life. It was a very even match. I spent 20 or 25 minutes totally crushed. Once people started to arrive, I sat in a bathtub. They were coming to encourage me. I would thank them and ask them to leave me alone. I donít like to be seen crying.

Q. At some point, your uncle Toni even proposed he stop being your coach.

A. This year, when things werenít going well at the beginning, he did suggest that. I said no. That was not the problem I thought I had enough strength in me to turn the situation around, with no need of a new coach. Toni is, and will continue to be, my coach.

Q. What have you learned from all this?

A. Iíve learned to be more patient. I have more experience. Itís important when things arenít going well. When things are going badly, you get nervous, but I know the logical outcome is that I will eventually play well again. If not tomorrow, in two weeks, a month, three, five. Once youíve been up there, and youíve proved to yourself you can do itÖ It's not for nothing you are number two. So you go up and down. Thatís the most important lesson this year. I hadnít won a title for 8 months, and I was anxious. When I won Indian Wells, I started to play at a great level. Often, all you need is a click.

Q. Have you changed your game to accomplish this?

A. On clay, I started to go to net a lot more, and Iíve changed my game style a bit, always with my foundation of fighting and high intensity. Now I can slice the ball, go up to net and volley with more assurance. Iíve also improved my serve. I still need a bit more speed, and confidence you get from those extra 10-20 km, to make you serve into a real weapon.

A. You also need to be more aggressive in the return.

A. Yes, sometimes I forget. Itís something I need to work on, because it does not come easy. Until I reach bottom, until I see I am playing badly, that am playing too defensively, I don't realize I need to be aggressive again.

Q. Do they ask you questions about doping more than any other player?

A. I donít feel more persecuted, but mistreated. A lot of these things seem ridiculous to me. When I finished my match against Ferrer, I had to stay there until midnight because I couldnít pee. I ate on the floor.

Q. Now, a positive result would get four yearís suspension.

A. A Frenadol [cold medicine], a Vicks Vaporub... it's considered doping. We have to be aware that, often, just a little oversight can become doping. I donít know if Martina Hingis has taken cocaine. Do you think thatís going to help her? To me, it wouldnít at all. And yet, they destroy her image. I am disgusted by drugs, but some things are just ridiculous. We the players should have more solidarity among ourselves, be strong, protest. We are not united. I am gone all the month of December and I have to report where I am going to be every single day. Itís ridiculous. You say to yourself: Why am I being treated as a criminal?

Q. Why do you think Federer does not get injured as often.

A. Because of the calendar and because his style of play is less prone to injury. Heís looser. Federer has astonishing innate abilities. I do too, but I need to work much harder. I donít feel I get injured more often than others. But I feel that the slightest problem tends to turn into a big problem. This year I only missed the Marseille tournament.

Q. Weren't you injured during Roland Garros?

A. I played all of Roland Garros with a numbed, anesthetized foot. I didnít want to go to the hospital so as not to put doubts into my head. I knew it was noting serious. My foot hurt. I went to the hospital after the final, and I had a small contusion.

Q. In 2005 you were very affected by a foot injury. This year you were out for a month and a half because of your knees. Was it the same?

A. Itís different. I knew I could get over it. I knew what I had. I played because it was the US Open, but mentally I was no longer fresh. I could not see things clearly. Then I had some tests done in Mallorca, and everything was pretty bad. my immune system, ironÖ The doctor prescribed a weekís rest, and I went to Ibiza. It was one of the best weeks of my life.

Q. What did you think when Federer lost to Gonzalez?

A. I thought it was a miracle.

Q. Is it a problem that the clay season is so packed together?

A. Itís a disadvantage. I spend two months playing so many matches, with the pressure of winning. For Federer itís different. He has many weeks with nothing. I would not be in Shangai without the points I get in the clay season. I had a good season outside of clay, but if something happens to me during the clay season, I will be affected the rest of the year.

Q. Do you feel played out?

A. When I got to Hamburg, I felt overworked. At a certain point, my head snapped, especially against Federer. I had been playing final after final for several weeks, with very hard matches and pressure. Thinking about the same thing everyday. It comes a point where you feel tired.

Q. The Chinese are surprised by the contrast between your calm personality and your warrior image.

A. I do the usual things youíd expect of a normal young men my age. I am kid, a plain normal young guy.

FedForGOAT 11-20-2007 07:44 PM

Nice interview. Nadal seems like a nice guy.

jukka1970 11-20-2007 09:09 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Benhur (Post 1893159)
Interview with Rafael Nadal

http://www.elpais.com/articulo/depor...lpepidep_1/Tes

November 20, 2007

Rafael Nadal (Manacor, Mallorca; 1986) sprints while sending 10-meter passes with a soccer ball along the long hallways of Qi Zhong stadium. Then he goes inside the playerís area and begins a kind of juggling act with Roger Federer. Nothing suggests that the Swiss has just beaten him 6-4 y 6-1 in the semifinals of the Masters Tournament. Nadal, who says he has had the best season ever, takes the ball and starts tapping it with his feet. ďYouíre better than Maradona!" says Federer. Then, the number two in the world says hi to the Chinese driver of his Mercedes, calling him by his name, and gives us an interview.

Question: Youíve played this entire year without a lot of physical training for endurance.

Answer: I have never said it, because it sounds like an excuse. I donít like to talk about injuries. I do physical training everyday, except I canít run. But now, during the pre-season, I am going to try. Ever since my foot injury in 205, I am very careful and I avoid running. And that shows. I need to get my physical form as I play matches, and itís hard because I don't have a good foundation.

Q. What have you done to counter this problem?

R. I swim, I run inside the pool to get endurance, I do rowing, bicycle, the elliptic machineÖ But from experience, I know it does not replace running. It does not give you the same kind of confidence. Itís hard.

Itís a matter of whether you dare to push down. I used to manage a very high ball, very long, the best one I had. Unconsciously, my game has been adapting to these little problems. Now I donít do it so aggressively, but with shorter steps, trying not to force it so much. Sometimes itís an obstacle. Psychologically, you feel squashed. You say to yourself: ****! If only I could be physically like I was in 2005 Ė now that I can play tennis so much better!

Q. Youíve always played with the number one spot in mind. But now, Novak Djokovic threatens to take away your number two spot.

A. Iíve always worried more about whoís behind me than whoís in front. Federer has always been far ahead. At a certain point, the media started to say that I could be number one by the end of the year. For a while I was ahead in the annual race, and he had a lot of points to defend. The key match was the Wimbledon final.

P. What happened in the locker room after that final? There are some rumors going aroundÖ

A. I kept myself together pretty well during the ceremony, I didnít want to act like a child. But once I arrived in the locker room , I sat down, and naturally, after losing the final of the tournament that thrills me the most, against the number one player, and having had lots of opportunities, I started to cry Ė out of disappointment, sadness. It was the only match where I cried afterwards last year, and one of the few where Iíve done it in my entire life. It was a very even match. I spent 20 or 25 minutes totally crushed. Once people started to arrive, I sat in a bathtub. They were coming to encourage me. I would thank them and ask them to leave me alone. I donít like to be seen crying.

Q. At some point, your uncle Toni even proposed he stop being your coach.

A. This year, when things werenít going well at the beginning, he did suggest that. I said no. That was not the problem I thought I had enough strength in me to turn the situation around, with no need of a new coach. Toni is, and will continue to be, my coach.

Q. What have you learned from all this?

A. Iíve learned to be more patient. I have more experience. Itís important when things arenít going well. When things are going badly, you get nervous, but I know the logical outcome is that I will eventually play well again. If not tomorrow, in two weeks, a month, three, five. Once youíve been up there, and youíve proved to yourself you can do itÖ It's not for nothing you are number two. So you go up and down. Thatís the most important lesson this year. I hadnít won a title for 8 months, and I was anxious. When I won Indian Wells, I started to play at a great level. Often, all you need is a click.

Q. Have you changed your game to accomplish this?

A. On clay, I started to go to net a lot more, and Iíve changed my game style a bit, always with my foundation of fighting and high intensity. Now I can slice the ball, go up to net and volley with more assurance. Iíve also improved my serve. I still need a bit more speed, and confidence you get from those extra 10-20 km, to make you serve into a real weapon.

A. You also need to be more aggressive in the return.

A. Yes, sometimes I forget. Itís something I need to work on, because it does not come easy. Until I reach bottom, until I see I am playing badly, that am playing too defensively, I don't realize I need to be aggressive again.

Q. Do they ask you questions about doping more than any other player?

A. I donít feel more persecuted, but mistreated. A lot of these things seem ridiculous to me. When I finished my match against Ferrer, I had to stay there until midnight because I couldnít pee. I ate on the floor.

Q. Now, a positive result would get four yearís suspension.

A. A Frenadol [cold medicine], a Vicks Vaporub... it's considered doping. We have to be aware that, often, just a little oversight can become doping. I donít know if Martina Hingis has taken cocaine. Do you think thatís going to help her? To me, it wouldnít at all. And yet, they destroy her image. I am disgusted by drugs, but some things are just ridiculous. We the players should have more solidarity among ourselves, be strong, protest. We are not united. I am gone all the month of December and I have to report where I am going to be every single day. Itís ridiculous. You say to yourself: Why am I being treated as a criminal?

Q. Why do you think Federer does not get injured as often.

A. Because of the calendar and because his style of play is less prone to injury. Heís looser. Federer has astonishing innate abilities. I do too, but I need to work much harder. I donít feel I get injured more often than others. But I feel that the slightest problem tends to turn into a big problem. This year I only missed the Marseille tournament.

Q. Weren't you injured during Roland Garros?

A. I played all of Roland Garros with a numbed, anesthetized foot. I didnít want to go to the hospital so as not to put doubts into my head. I knew it was noting serious. My foot hurt. I went to the hospital after the final, and I had a small contusion.

Q. In 2005 you were very affected by a foot injury. This year you were out for a month and a half because of your knees. Was it the same?

A. Itís different. I knew I could get over it. I knew what I had. I played because it was the US Open, but mentally I was no longer fresh. I could not see things clearly. Then I had some tests done in Mallorca, and everything was pretty bad. my immune system, ironÖ The doctor prescribed a weekís rest, and I went to Ibiza. It was one of the best weeks of my life.

Q. What did you think when Federer lost to Gonzalez?

A. I thought it was a miracle.

Q. Is it a problem that the clay season is so packed together?

A. Itís a disadvantage. I spend two months playing so many matches, with the pressure of winning. For Federer itís different. He has many weeks with nothing. I would not be in Shangai without the points I get in the clay season. I had a good season outside of clay, but if something happens to me during the clay season, I will be affected the rest of the year.

Q. Do you feel played out?

A. When I got to Hamburg, I felt overworked. At a certain point, my head snapped, especially against Federer. I had been playing final after final for several weeks, with very hard matches and pressure. Thinking about the same thing everyday. It comes a point where you feel tired.

Q. The Chinese are surprised by the contrast between your calm personality and your warrior image.

A. I do the usual things youíd expect of a normal young men my age. I am kid, a plain normal young guy.

Also a great interview, again thanks for posting. Just goes to show how much respect Nadal and Federer have for each other. I like Nadal's comments over the vicks vapor rub thing. I have to admit, it's a little weird to hear about some of the things that are on the banned list. And I'm glad he kept Toni as his coach, really shows that he respects his uncle as a coach, and takes his defeats as well as wins with pride and doesn't blame outside factors. It's really amazing sometimes to realize that Nadal is still young, because he's so mature for his age.

Jukka

alas 11-20-2007 09:13 PM

haha..as a football fan..i reli dun mind seein Nadal in da footballing world..even FedEx praises him about his footballing skills! :)

rafan 11-20-2007 11:03 PM

Thanks so much for posting that interview. This underlines exactly why he has so many fans and really explains a great deal about his mental attitiude to his game. It answers so many questions about why he is so often cautious in matches and the fear about being injured. I admire his enormous loyalty to his uncle and coach but this is the only part I would question: should he change his coach ?

Swissv2 11-20-2007 11:10 PM

I hope this interview gives the fanatical fans something to learn about then bashing the "other" player over and over again. Federer and Nadal respect each other. When they play against each other, its all business - but there doesn't need to be animosity off the court.

FedForGOAT 11-20-2007 11:14 PM

I didn't understand. Nadal can't run? does he have a lingering foot injury that slows him down? Don't tell me he used to be even faster! what happened?

Nadal_Freak 11-20-2007 11:15 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Swissv2 (Post 1893522)
I hope this interview gives the fanatical fans something to learn about then bashing the "other" player over and over again. Federer and Nadal respect each other. When they play against each other, its all business - but there doesn't need to be animosity off the court.

Yeah it shows that Nadal is much more humble. Too nice to Federer and just feeding his ego.

FedForGOAT 11-20-2007 11:23 PM

did you read at all the quote you posted?

"no need to bash the other player"

ananda 11-21-2007 12:46 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jukka1970 (Post 1893372)
Also a great interview, again thanks for posting. Just goes to show how much respect Nadal and Federer have for each other. I like Nadal's comments over the vicks vapor rub thing.

Jukka

Does vicks vaporub make one more muscular ?
Must try some on my chest and biceps real fast, LOL !

tzinc 11-21-2007 12:50 AM

Nadal's a good guy. I don't know why people love to hate on him.

Dilettante 11-21-2007 01:20 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Swissv2 (Post 1893522)
I hope this interview gives the fanatical fans something to learn about then bashing the "other" player over and over again. Federer and Nadal respect each other. When they play against each other, its all business - but there doesn't need to be animosity off the court.

Some people think they understand tennis game better than Federer (#1) and Nadal (#2).

GOD_BLESS_RAFA 11-21-2007 03:22 AM

Yes nice interview! Thanks to the one that has posted it! I did not know he cried a lot in the locker room after Wimbly final...Vamos Rafa!!

Buuurnz 11-21-2007 05:38 AM

I#m a fed fan but one thing is 4 sure, nadal is a great guy that respects other players and is always nice to anyone! great interview...let fed and nadal meet in the french final again;) and in the wimbledon too!!! would love to see that again!

rightytopspin79 11-21-2007 07:08 AM

Thanks for the post, I thought it showed how aware of his situation Rafa really is. Sometimes you get athletes that are aloof to what's happening around them. Thanks sharing that.

Benhur 11-21-2007 07:14 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by FedForGOAT (Post 1893525)
I didn't understand. Nadal can't run? does he have a lingering foot injury that slows him down? Don't tell me he used to be even faster! what happened?

I imagine his trainers and doctors have told him not to run during physical training (something he used to do) in order not to give his feet and knees more of a beating than they already get during play.

cknobman 11-21-2007 07:30 AM

Great interview shows how much class is at the top of tennis right now.

Does anyone know how long Rafa would need to take off for his foot injury to clear up for good, or if it is even possible?

SempreSami 11-21-2007 08:49 AM

Rafa seems a top bloke, very humble too. Still trains on the same courts in Manacor I believe and reserves his time on it like anyone else has to.


All times are GMT -8. The time now is 11:02 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.6.9
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
© 2006 - Tennis Warehouse