Rafael Nadal: “I’ve lost six games in a row, that can’t be”

Two losses in two games. It does not seem the best way to start the season, this has been confirmed Rafael Nadal in this United Cup 2023Although the Spaniard is always capable of seeing everything with perspective and staying with the positive aspects. It is true that losing is always losing, but behind a result there is always something more. For now, the Spaniard admits that he still has many things to improve, but he is convinced that he will reach the first Grand Slam on the calendar, where he will seek to defend his throne.

Brief comment on defeat

“What has made the difference is that he has played better than me in important moments. I’ve had my chances during the match, but I’ve made serious mistakes in moments where they can’t be made, at least if you want to win these types of matches”.

Room for improvement

“I’ve been on the track for almost six hours, but I need more, I need battles like this. I haven’t played many official matches in the last 6-7 months. Days like this help, although the victories make the process much faster, but I need to keep fighting. At times I have played a good level of tennis, especially with the backhand and the change of direction with the forehand. Putting everything in perspective, I know the conditions are not ideal for me, the ball was dead today, it didn’t help much with spin. The players who pay more flatly have more options, although it is by no means an excuse, today I was able to play good tennis but not enough”.

Key points of the match

“In the second set, set and break up, I think I had chances to win every game after the break, up to 5-1 and even 6-1, but I lost six games in a row. This can’t happen to me. Then there were some good points in the third moto, but again I made mistakes. I just need to keep fighting and finding my rhythm. Now I have two weeks until the start of the Australian Open, it didn’t come in the ideal situation, but I can’t say it’s very negative either, at times I played very well. These two matches will help me, I need to win a couple of matches, the level is not that bad”.

Sensations ahead of the Australian Open

“I don’t like to compare, every year and every situation is different, so I don’t care. You never know what could happen, because a year ago at this time it seemed impossible to imagine what happened next, today it seems difficult for it to happen again. I’m going to work hard these two weeks to improve physically, I’ll play some sets and practice against the guys, that will help me gain consistency. I am not too alarmed or negative about what has happened, there was a very real chance of losing these two games, last year I also lost the ones in Abu Dhabi. I have an important space to improve, I think I can achieve it, here I was very close to beating two great players”.

no physical problems

“Physically I haven’t been bad, but I need to be a little faster, a little more dynamic on the court to read the ball better, this is what gives you confidence, in addition to the hours on court playing matches. In terms of physical problems I can’t complain, so for that part I’m happy, it helps me to keep going. The situation is what it is and I have to improve it, that’s all. I really think it’s going to happen, but I don’t know when. I hope it happens soon, I don’t see myself that far away”.

Plans these two weeks

“I am going to go quickly to Melbourne, but tomorrow we still play. Of course I don’t want to play, but I can’t leave, so I’ll leave on Wednesday. I will visit the city a bit and then I will leave in the afternoon, I am not sure about the schedule. Although the idea is great, I find a negative point in this competition: it is not ideal that we are here today playing for nothing. It’s the first year of the United Cup, so these things need to be fixed and improved to make it more interesting for everyone. It is not good for the tournament that today we play against Australia with both of us out of the tournament, that would not happen if the country that did not play at the beginning plays the one that lost on the first day, so all the qualifiers would make sense. That will make the competition better for the future”.

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