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MC: Nadal Thursday Press Conference Transcript

4/19/2013Rafaholics ™


RAFAEL NADAL THURSDAY PRESS CONFERENCE

Monte-Carlo, Monaco

R. NADAL/P. Kohlschreiber

6-2, 6-4

An interview with:

RAFAEL NADAL


THE MODERATOR:  Questions, please. 

Q.  It was maybe a little bit tougher today than yesterday or did you feel as comfortable out there as you did the first match?
RAFAEL NADAL:  Sure was tougher, no?  Kohlschreiber is a very good player.  I don't know his ranking.  Around 20, but... 
He's a very complete player.  He can play very well in every surface.  His serve is good.  I said yesterday before the match, no, that he has all shots.  He's able to play with high intensity, good rhythm. 
I think the match started with a lot of intensity for both of us and I was able to have the break, played a few good points.  After that I keep playing comfortable with my serve.  A long game and a few good points in the 4 2, I was able to do the break. 
The second set I think the intensity goes down a little bit.  But I think I was on control with my serve almost every time, no?  I had a few mistakes in the beginning of the second in important points, one breakpoint, you know, 15 30.  When that happen, you know, you are there.  When you are 3 All, the match is close and anything can happen. 

Q.  When you are coming back onto clay, what is the most important first thing you have to have in your game?  What is the most important element to stepping back onto the clay?
RAFAEL NADAL:  I think there is a few things, no?  First thing, you have to find control of the ball, the way you hit the ball.  You need to play a ball higher than when you play on the rest of the surfaces.  For my style I need to play a little bit like first I need to find the confidence on hitting every ball without thinking too much, know that the ball is going to go inside with the right rhythm.  Find the ball that, you know, you are not having winners, but the opponent cannot attack you, no?  That's the first step. 
When that happens and you are able to play with a good intensity with this ball, but not easy ball for the opponent, then you can start to go inside and win the points with the winners. 
You need to change directions.  For sure, the first thing to make that happen is the movements.  You need to move well.  If your movements are not good, you cannot hit with confidence.  You cannot hit with 100% security.  And you need to feel powerful on your legs to play the ball long. 

Q.  I'm probably asking the wrong person.  But if you are having not such a good time on clay, is it a difficult surface to get your mind and your game back because you have to think of so many more intricate parts?
RAFAEL NADAL:  I think it's a surface that gives you chances, gives you different chances.  You can play aggressive and you can have good success playing aggressive.  You can play defensive and you can have good success playing defensive.  You can play defending and counterattacking. 
You have lots of options to do, in my opinion.  You can have good success with every one if you make it well.  I think is a surface that you have time to think and you have time to prepare. 

Q.  You didn't play for seven, eight months.  How would you compare your state of mind to last year and the year before?  Are you more relaxed, more fresh, more excited to play?
RAFAEL NADAL:  I always was very excited to play in every tournament, and especially when I'm playing in a tournament like Monte Carlo, no?  Be more excited I think is impossible. 
Be more fresher?  Well, more fresh I cannot be after long time without playing tennis (laughter).  If I am losing, is not because I am not fresh.  That's the real thing. 
No, well, I feel more relaxed, yes.  Then happened I spend not easy moments for the last year.  Now I'm back on the tour.  Just be here is a good new.  And winning matches, I say every day, but winning every match is very important to me today.  Every time I have the chance to go on court and play well, feel competitive, is a really good feeling.  The injury was, you know, one year ago, was few months ago, one month ago.  I didn't forget all that time yet. 

Q.  What do you think about meeting Dimitrov the next round?
RAFAEL NADAL:  He's playing well.  He had a good chance against Djokovic in first set of Indian Wells, then good chance against Andy in first set of Miami.  I saw both matches a little bit.  Now he's the present and the future.  He's able to play very well, very aggressive, very good technique.  He's complete player. 
I have to try to be solid all the time and put him in not easy positions to attack the ball.  Hopefully if that happens I will have my chances to go inside, no?  I'm going to try to play a solid match with high intensity and we'll see what he is doing. 

Q.  As you know, Wawrinka just beat Andy.  What do you think of Stan's game?
RAFAEL NADAL:  He's playing great.  He played the final of Buenos Aires.  I don't remember his result in Indian Wells.  I don't remember, sorry. 
But I saw him playing well last week in Casablanca.  I thought he will have the chance to win the title, but Robredo finally did.  For sure, when you win like he won yesterday against good clay court player like Albert Montañés, with that result, today another great result against Andy, you must be playing great. 
Potentially he's a top player.  He can play in every surface.  His ball is very good.  Very good quality of ball.  I think for Andy always playing the first tournament on clay is not easy.  I'm sure that Andy will play much better in a few weeks than what he did here today, sure.  But even like this, play against Wawrinka, the third round, is a bad draw. 

Q.  This is generally your first clay court tournament of the year.  Do you feel in a way the benefits of having played three clay court events this year?
RAFAEL NADAL:  No.  I don't feel that way.  I play three tournaments on clay.  I played in Indian Wells later, but I stopped for a month. 
For me really if this tournament will be just after Acapulco, I will tell you yes, sure.  But playing on hard and being outside of the tour for a month after Indian Wells, I just play a month after a long time without playing tennis.  Is like you need to start a little bit with everything another time, so... 

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