Billie Jean King: Nadal 'could need a year' to rebuild confidence

RF-18

Talk Tennis Guru
There is obviously huge problems in his game. He is not adjusting, he keeps on playing the same way he always did, but he can't. Uncle Toni is not doing anything about it.

Nadal has great touch at the net, he looks natural up there, but he rarely goes up there, except for easy put aways when an opponent stretches out, but this is also rare. He never S&Vs, like taking risks after a shot, to sprint up there.

Djokovic, just like Federer, gets the longevity part. Djoko has said time and time again he wants to be at the top as much as possible, and with the way he is playing now he is sending out a clear message, he will be playing for many more years and battling for the biggest trophies and highest ranking. He is not consuming much energy. Nadal needs to learn from them, but I'm afraid it's too late.
 
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hup

Rookie
Sillyness confidence argument again.

29 is old in tennis age.

Old

Old

Old.

They said the same thing about Rodge at first. They quit finally. And that was Rodge with all his grace.
are you thick? compare rogers game to nadals. he will NOT have any success as he gets older with the same grinding stand 20ft behind the baseline strategy.
 

OddJack

G.O.A.T.
are you thick? compare rogers game to nadals. he will NOT have any success as he gets older with the same grinding stand 20ft behind the baseline strategy.
I compared their age you smarty not their games. Add their style and Nadal becomes less likely to win at his age, thats goes without saying, thick.
 

fednad

Hall of Fame
BJK is right.
Nadal needs a year to build confidence to call a press conference and announce retirement.
 

tennisaddict

Bionic Poster
It is physical than mental.

A player does not win 14 majors being mentally weak. A player does not reverse a 0-7 loss if he is mentally gone.
 

La Grande

G.O.A.T.
It is physical than mental.

A player does not win 14 majors being mentally weak. A player does not reverse a 0-7 loss if he is mentally gone.
Agree with that completely.

Depth, serve, positioning on the court (stand closer to the baseline).. improve one of those and he is a threat once again.
 

britam25

Hall of Fame
Confidence is part of it, but, ya can't make chicken salad outta chicken ****. The combination of playing so many matches(early start as a pro, and, obviously, a lot of success means a lot of matches) and that lovely style of his combines to mean that he may be 29 chronologically, but he's like, 34 physically. He is as dead as fried chicken.
 

Mick

Legend
>>Nadal's appalling clay season came to the worst possible end as he was taken apart by Novak Djokovic in the French Open quarter-finals on Wednesday, the Serb racing to a straight-sets victory. It was just the second defeat of the Spaniard's career at Roland Garros, and was the worst blow in a series of miserable results for Nadal on his favourite surface.

Yet American tennis icon King says that there is nothing wrong with Nadal's game - only with his attitude towards it. "He's playing better than he was," King told USA Today. "I just don't know if he knows it... "I would try to get [him] thinking differently. He keeps telling himself, 'I don't have'. I would keep trying to say what you do have."<<

Haha. Maybe BJK wants to take over uncle Toni job :)
 

bullfan

Legend
Oh come on. The signs have been clear since 2012, when he was gone from tennis for 7 months. He came back and played his way into excellent form once again with an excellent 2013, but since the 2014 Australian Open he hasn't looked the same, aside from 1 more French Open title.

Nadal plays a grinding style of tennis, has been at the top of his sport since 2005 playing that style, having dominated tennis on clay so utterly for so long. He isn't getting any younger either.
I disagree. While Nadal was the best player of 2013, I think 2013 level was lower, like 2012, and 2014 in general for all players. Nadal only had a couple of good clay matches in 2013, other than that he looked like he was hit and miss, and fortunate his opponents weren't up to snuff.

He really shined during USHardcourts, and a couple of RG matches. The competition was lower than normal.
 

Shaolin

G.O.A.T.
I think he's burned out. Looks like he doesn't care as much anymore and just going through the motions. Who knows though...he's a great champion and might surprise us all yet this year.
 

Goosehead

Legend
Confidence is part of it, but, ya can't make chicken salad outta chicken ****. The combination of playing so many matches(early start as a pro, and, obviously, a lot of success means a lot of matches) and that lovely style of his combines to mean that he may be 29 chronologically, but he's like, 34 physically. He is as dead as fried chicken.
as dead as fried chicken :) that's as dead as dead can be. :neutral:
 

NGM

Hall of Fame
One thing I dont understand: what does "confidence" mean? People uses the word as it is a magical pill that if you swallow many enough you can fly to the sky or walk on the water. Nonsense.

If I told you 1 billion times YOU CAN BEAT NADAL and you finally agree with me can you actually do it?
 

NamRanger

G.O.A.T.
There is obviously huge problems in his game. He is not adjusting, he keeps on playing the same way he always did, but he can't. Uncle Toni is not doing anything about it.

Nadal has great touch at the net, he looks natural up there, but he rarely goes up there, except for easy put aways when an opponent stretches out, but this is also rare. He never S&Vs, like taking risks after a shot, to sprint up there.

Djokovic, just like Federer, gets the longevity part. Djoko has said time and time again he wants to be at the top as much as possible, and with the way he is playing now he is sending out a clear message, he will be playing for many more years and battling for the biggest trophies and highest ranking. He is not consuming much energy. Nadal needs to learn from them, but I'm afraid it's too late.

Nadal can't just blindly charge into the net, his issue is that his forehand gives his opponent too much time to pass him. He also can't hit the ball on the rise nearly as well as Djokovic or Federer, as such he can't rob people of time. His style of play used to work when he could outmuscle and outrun everyone, but that's not working anymore because he's clearly lost at least a full step. There's no way on earth he'd ever drop a set to the likes of Jack Sock if he was at his 100% best, nor would he lose to Wawrinka on clay (who although is good on clay, doesn't have the mobility, consistency, or angles to beat a 100% Nadal on clay).
 

Cup8489

G.O.A.T.
One thing I dont understand: what does "confidence" mean? People uses the word as it is a magical pill that if you swallow many enough you can fly to the sky or walk on the water. Nonsense.

If I told you 1 billion times YOU CAN BEAT NADAL and you finally agree with me can you actually do it?
It's trusting your instincts and shot selection completely. If you've been struggling with a shot, say the forehand up the line, you're not as likely to aim for the line itself if you're not confident. If you feel like you can't miss, you tend to hit better shots.. and thus play better.

Why is this something you don't understand? Don't you tennis?
 

Smasher08

Legend
Is it that he's gotten older and getting back in top form after long layoffs is thus harder?

We've seen what a beast he is on return from his many injury time-outs, so why is this time different? This time he was away for a minor operation, it wasn't even an injury.

So, why is there a mental/no confidence issue? It's really weird tbh
It's because this layoff occurred after Feb/March 2014.

The 2015 return should be compared very pointedly with the 2013 return. The 2013 return followed 8 months off, and he was bageling the world No.3 within a few weeks.

The 2015 return followed appendicitis.
 

NGM

Hall of Fame
It's trusting your instincts and shot selection completely. If you've been struggling with a shot, say the forehand up the line, you're not as likely to aim for the line itself if you're not confident. If you feel like you can't miss, you tend to hit better shots.. and thus play better.

Why is this something you don't understand? Don't you tennis?
Thank you for you kindness question. I want to ask how old are you but I will save it till the end of our discussion.

Now can you tell me the 100% confident Rafael Nadal can still chase the difficult balls as he did just 5 years ago, or repeatedly producing unthinkable running forehand DTL which very much needs speed and endurance that he has lost due to his age? The physical difference between young Nadal and THIS Nadal is very obvious and can not be made up just by his mind. He run out of gas after the first two not-that-tense-set against Djokovic. Surely in that condition confidence can not get him out of trouble, no?

Confidence can help you put the ball back more precisely and doing many things better than usual. But it does not help you one bit if the distance between you and your opponent bigger than the Atlantic, which is very much the exact distance between him and Djokovic right now.
 

Mainad

Bionic Poster
Sillyness confidence argument again.

29 is old in tennis age.

Old

Old

Old.


They said the same thing about Rodge at first. They quit finally. And that was Rodge with all his grace.

Stan and Jo-W, the two 30 year olds contesting one of the semis today, beg to differ! :wink:
 

jg153040

G.O.A.T.
Why does it always have to be one or the other? Sometimes things aren't simple.

Why can't it be both? Mental and physical? After 12 years at the top even Nadal can get mentally tired. Plus he gets injured more often too, because his body is getting older.

It's both.
 

Start da Game

Hall of Fame
i think mustard is spot on......rafa's issue is not mental, it's rather physical which then relates to mental as well due to lack of winning......just too many injuries ruining what would have been a prime period for him over the last three years......he still hasn't returned to the player he was pre-2014 AO......

djokovic is not unbeatable......his level has been the same since 2011, it's just that nadal is not at his best to challenge him like in 2013 and 2012......he is still very fast on the court for a 29 year old, just needs to get back into shape.......BJK is prolly right, he will need some more time this time......
 

SLD76

G.O.A.T.
Dude is physically wrecked, period.

He can come to grips with it and adapt his game around his néw physical limits or he can retire.
 
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