madridopen2013 transcripts

Madrid: Semi-Final Press Conference Transcript



May 11, 2013

Rafael Nadal


R. NADAL/P. Andujar
6‑0, 6‑4

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Congratulations for your victory. You've already played four matches here in Madrid. Given the conditions of the court and also with the altitude and the fact that you've been seven months without playing, the feelings are worse or better than you were expecting before coming here?
RAFAEL NADAL: Well, you know, I didn't know if I was going to be in the final, you know. Obviously when I make it to the final like now the feelings are pretty good. I'm not going to lie to you.
After all, I'm playing one the most difficult tournaments. All of the best players are here. You know, when the tournaments come, I don't think about making it to the final. I just think about the first match.
If you're asking me after a week what are my feelings when I made to the to the final, for me, whatever happens this is a really great tournament. I had a really good tournament. I'm happy for being able to achieve all of what I achieved in these four matches.
Making it to the final here in Madrid is a really big joy. Also being able to play with my crowd here in Madrid, it's always something very special. And playing another final here, I think it's really good news.

Q. Are you one of those who thinks that the finals are like football, you play them or you win them?
RAFAEL NADAL: Well, I always think that you always to have try to be better; you have to be better when you can in the competition and the training sessions.
When you're competing, you compete to win. You don't compete to compete. After all, the competition is to win, lose.
The final is the match where it's the most important match of any competition because it's when there is more difference in all the senses. You can win or lose, but obviously the matches, when someone goes out there to compete, you go out there to win, not to play.

Q. It's possible that Tomas Berdych is one of the finalists for tomorrow. In 2006 I think there was a problem with him. They were talking about that for a couple of months. I guess that everything is forgotten. I don't know. Then another question: The people were talking some months ago that you will never be the same again. What can you say to all of those that are criticizing you so much?
RAFAEL NADAL: Well, no, no, I don't have a problem with criticism. People are free to give their opinions. Anyone can say out loud their opinion.
If you asked me five years ago if I thought I was finished I would say no. But if I had doubts of getting what I achieved already‑‑ obviously if I have doubts about myself, how am I going to face that other people are doubtful.
I have just faced all the doubts. I don't accept the critique. When you accept everything you're not forced to excel more. If you enjoy every day and you just try to do your best, to critique you I think the doubts are normal.
I try to do as good as possible every single day. Things are going well. The results cannot be better since I've been back. I really want to give thanks for the support of all the people that have been supporting me, and those close to me.
And Berdych, no, my relationship with Berdych is really good. No problem with Berdych. And if it wasn't like that, I wouldn't say today that it's wrong because it will be something badly for me to play the match against him tomorrow.
The relationship with him is perfectly. In fact, we've trained together many times. We nearly played some doubles in the past where I didn't attend because I was injured.
Really, no problem with him. I feel when there is tension in the court things happen, like those things that happened in 2006.
You know, he was also younger and I was also younger. So I think that he knows he was not behaving properly in that match. I think I had really good control of myself and I got also accelerated in that match. But nothing else. Everything finishes there.
You know, to have problems or to fight with people that you see every single week is something very uncomfortable, and I think that I like to live. I don't like to live with those uncomfortable things, and I don't think he does either.

Q. Before going back on the circuit in January, Mats Wilander said that he would be really, really surprised if you would be fighting for the title in Roland Garros. Do you think that analysis was made too early?
RAFAEL NADAL: No, no. You know, he wasn't saying nothing else. I've only played seven tournaments. I don't know if I'm going to be able to compete to win Roland Garros. I don't know it today.
The only thinking I think is that what I played until now has been really good. The results have been really positive. Today I'm enjoying my path to the final in one of the most important tournaments in the world.
We go step by step, week by week even when we get to Roland Garros. I already said we will see what happens and if I can reach Roland Garros in a good condition and I'm ready or not ready.
I also tell you my main goal this year for me, the only primary goal is to compete again and to have good feelings in competition. Maybe all of those good results I've been having, what they are giving me to think about is I can have options to reach a good condition in Roland Garros.
After being seven or eight months without training, I haven't been able to work, it's normal that after seven months without competition, six tournaments, seven, whatever, the normal thing is not to be in the condition I am right now.
That's just not normal.

Q. You always say that playing at home is important; it's special. I imagine that Davis Cup you won here was really special. A third title in Madrid, where would you rank it? Would it be really special?
RAFAEL NADAL: No, no, playing at home, it's always nice, and we all like to have to the support of the people behind you and feel that the people love you and support you. These feelings are just unforgettable.
My victory in Madrid in 2005 is one the of the most beautiful victories that I have in my career because of how the match went and the atmosphere we had there.
It was one of most thrilling moments of my career. Tomorrow is an important match for me. The simple fact of being able to compete, it's really a very important moment for me.
Tomorrow it's going to be a great moment. It's going to be a very difficult match if I play against one or the other. They're both playing very high levels. Here we have the altitude, so it's even more difficult.
They are really good servers and tomorrow is a going to be a nice day. Hopefully the people will enjoy it. Hopefully the people will help me to achieve what for me would be nearly a dream to be able to win my second Masters 1000 that I have played this year after seven months without playing.
Well, it would be something really, really beautiful. To do it at home, yeah, it's always really special.

Q. I wanted to talk about your racquet sponsor. We saw that they took a racquet to the Statosphere, the same with Felix Baumgartner. Are you still using that racquet? Does it have special powers?
RAFAEL NADAL: No, it didn't come back with any kind of powers. No, I'm not using it. It's just something nice that happened different and that's all.
THE MODERATOR: Questions in English.

Q. Tomorrow you will play your seventh final of the year. Looking back three months ago would you have expected that?
RAFAEL NADAL: No chance, no? When you're at home without having the chance to practice, without having the chance to see a big improvement on my knee‑‑ I went to Chile because I really wanted to start, but with not much positive thoughts, no, about what's going to happen.
But I happy, no? I am happy that I am able to keep competing and keep competing at very high level, having chances against every player that I play. That's an amazing news for me. Just every match for me means a lot to me, every victory.
And seriously, playing at home is always a very, very special feeling. Having that chance is just amazing, so just can say thank you very much to everybody who make it possible for me to be back on a tennis court, no?
So just thank you very much to all the people who helped me, and thank you very much all the people who support me from my mobile phone, Facebook, Twitter. It was very, very important, all the support in the low moments like happened during this seven months.

Q. I would like to ask you if you could see the match between Grigor Dimitrov and Wawrinka here. Also, you beat Grigor two weeks ago. I would like to ask you, what do you think Dimitrov can improve to approach the top 10 or top 15 or whatever, and if you are friends outside of the matches?
RAFAEL NADAL: Well, the first answer is I didn't see the match between Dimitrov and Djokovic or Dimitrov and Wawrinka.
Second thing, I think he really don't need to do a lot to be in the top positions of the ranking. I think just to be focused, to be humble, keep working hard, and that's all. He has everything to be in the top: Good backhand, forehand, good serve, good volley, good slice.
So there is no one reason why he is not going to be in the top. I'm sure that he will be. I have a very good relationship with him. It's true he's younger than me. I didn't have a lot of chances to be with him. That's honestly what happened.
But, you know, I respect him a lot. It's good to see new and fresh faces on the tour that are going to have a good chance to be in the future, win of Grand Slam or No. 1.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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