SEOpen: 4th RD Presser Transcript


Q. Well done. The score didn't quite reflect the match. It was a bit tougher than that, wasn't it?
RAFAEL NADAL: At the beginning, yes. The beginning was a very tough match for me. I think I start playing more aggressive, I started playing shorter, so I suffered a lot with my serves the beginning of the match.
But seriously later, at the end of the first set, I felt that I start to win my serves easier than him. So the last couple of games of the end of the first set, I believe that I had more the control of the game, you know.
On the second set I started well, 3 Love, so after I didn't suffer a lot with my serve. Just in the last game with the 5 3 that I didn't play my best game there and he break me, no? Happy to have the break back later and finally win the match.
Q. In the first set you took a trainer break. New injury? Left knee? Is it okay?
RAFAEL NADAL: Yeah, well, I had this since Indian Wells. During the week of Indian Wells, the knee was getting a little bit worse, so I arrive here so so, and happy I still play in quarterfinals.
I am not probably at perfect conditions today with the left knee, but important thing is try to win as many matches as possible. For me here is important tournament, and every victory have, you know, very, very big value for me, especially without being perfect.
But important thing after this is I have two weeks to recover for Monte Carlo. I'm happy to be in quarterfinals, and I will try my best for the next round, for sure.
Q. It's rumored that you stepped down from the ATP player council. Can you just explain to us about why you made that decision.
RAFAEL NADAL: Well, I have been there for a couple of years. You know, I really don't know how to do things without put my 100%.
So if I go to play golf, I try my best in every moment. If I go to the player council, you know, I try my best in the player council. I put all my energy there.
So last year at the end of the season, you know, was a lot of things there. You know, finally I believe I put too much energy there. I am happy to represent my players there for the last couple of years.
I believe that we did few things well for the sport. I believe it's not enough. So today I believe that I am not the right one to keep working there. So I think another people can do better than me today.
Q. You have played Kei previously three times and this is the fourth time. Did you feel like he played differently this time or did you see any progress?
RAFAEL NADAL: He's doing well. He's playing great tennis. He's able to do the most difficult things of this sport very easy because he's able to go inside the court, change the direction of the ball. That's probably the most difficult thing of this sport. He's able to do it very easy, no?
When he improves and he plays with a little bit of less mistakes in some moments, he will be fighting for everything. So I like a lot how Kei plays. Seriously I have big respect for him. Before the match I know this match was a very dangerous one for me, and another reason I'm very happy to be through.
Q. You said before Kei will be a top 10 in the future. You say before. So do you have same opinion right now?
RAFAEL NADAL: Yes. Which ranking he has today?
Q. 16.
RAFAEL NADAL: He's still young, no? No, I believe he was very unlucky with the injuries in the past, so why not, no? He ends the season last year very well after a period, hard period with injuries. You know how tough is coming back after the injuries.
So he's playing very well another time, starting the season with quarterfinals, and he made quarterfinals in Australian Open.
So, you know, it's a fantastic start of the season. If he keep playing well, he will have his chances, for sure.
Q. Just back to the player council thing, can you tell us what areas you suggested you have been very frustrated.
RAFAEL NADAL: I never said that I have been frustrated, no. I just said that I am not the right one. You know, I don't have enough energy to, you know I cannot still put in my 100% there in the player council, no?
I can be there just listening, but that's not my style, no? I understand my period finish, and that's it. No, no, I am not frustrated. I believe that we can do much more things than what we have done until the day that I left.
My feeling is a great opportunity to improve the sport, because today the players are very unified.
So, you know, there is always troubles there. I understand sometimes the trouble from the other part, from tournaments, but I don't understand sometimes the trouble from our part, from the from our reps, no?
So that's all. No, no, no, I am not frustrated. I try my best. I go. I resigned to the player council knowing that I tried my best and I put all my effort to try to represent my players the players that I represent they are the top 25 players as good as I can.
So today I feel that another player can do better than me, because I spend probably three, four years. We did things, but not enough. That's my feeling.
Q. Can I just ask you a little bit about slow play, Rafa? There were situations today where the match on Grandstand had played five games before the match on Stadium Court even started.
RAFAEL NADAL: We went on court like 15 minutes later than the Grandstand.
Q. Why is that?
RAFAEL NADAL: That's television, I believe.
Q. Don't you think there should be an obligation to actually start the match at 11:00?
RAFAEL NADAL: But 11:00 is not the time to start the match. 11:00 is the time that we go on court.
Q. Over on Grandstand with an 11:00 start they played five games before you had even started your match.
RAFAEL NADAL: You know, I have a lot of things to think. That's not my job. (Laughter.)
Q. I just wonder, if the time of the match says 11:00, should the players be on the court at 11:00?
RAFAEL NADAL: I went to you know, I am a late guy. (Laughter.) That's the real thing.
But today I went on court when the supervisor told me. So that's the real thing. So for one time is not my fault (Laughter.)
Q. I have a question about David Ferrer. He's been in the top 5 for so many years and never won a Grand Slam or Masters Series. Do you have any idea why?
RAFAEL NADAL: Today because we are living a very difficult era of the tennis, no? That's the real thing. No, no, no. Probably another year David will have much more chances with his level to win an important titles.
Because he's a fantastic player, very regular player. His level is very, very high. But today the situation is that he was unlucky, because every time that he was there he has to fight against a very, very top guy.
Sure, he can win against everyone because his level is unbelievable. But today, to win a Masters 1000, to win a Grand Slam, you have to win against minimum two top 4. That's what happen the last couple of years almost in every tournament.
So he was there a lot of times. He will keep having chances to win. He did a fantastic wins in his career. He's having an unbelievable career.
He win three Davis Cups, so that's a lot. And he plays the final of the World Tour Finals in Shanghai couple years ago.
He's doing great, I believe. Remain just probably a big, big title for him. But the era today is the situation to win these kind of tournaments probably one of the more difficult.

Source: UBI Tennis

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