interview USOpen2013

Nadal: The last eight months have been a gift


Photo: Reuters

The day after capturing his thirteenth Grand Slam, the US Open champion gave an exclusive interview to MARCA in New York.

Q. Do you feel like the third best player of all time?
A. I don't know, but I'm totally against the idea of measuring these things by the number of Grand Slams you win. People who only look at that are far removed from tennis. Those of us who are part of the sport know that they are the benchmark, but they aren't everything.

Q. Which of your big titles would you pick out?
A. You can't say some are more special and others less so. For example, winning in Acapulco meant a lot to me... as did winning in Barcelona, in Madrid... Winning the US Open feels different because of everything that came before it. Everything that's happened over the last eight months has been a gift.

Q. Djokovic whispered something in your ear when he congratulated you.
A. He said that I'd played incredible tennis and deserved to win.

Q. What went through your mind when Djokovic missed that last ball?
A. That by winning the US Open, I was capping off an unforgettable season – the most emotional of my career. You think about the tough times and the people who stood by you. It's thanks to them that I'm here today.

Rafa Nadal confessed to MARCA that he is tired, but that he has responsibilities and that is why he is in Madrid to compete in the Davis Cup with Spain. He talks about being world number 1, his knee injury, his state of mind...

"These results have a sell-by date. I can't always win the difficult games, like the US Open against Djokovic, like the match against Isner in Cincinnati, or against Federer, also in Cincinnati; Djokovic in Montreal... I have to lose and one day I will, because that's life, and in our sport, defeat is a constant travel companion. I have to be ready for the day on which I lose and I know that defeat will come soon," Rafa told MARCA.

"Of course, if I ever feel that my head is no longer in the game and I've lost that passion for the sport, I won't be here. I just hope that my physical fitness allows me to enjoy playing for a few more years," continued Nadal.

"I’ve managed to stay fit throughout the tour but it is true that my knee often hurts, although for now, it isn’t holding me back. I am so tired, that what I’d like to do is rest and recover, both physically and mentally for the Asian tour. This is the final sprint of the year and I’m competing for something as special as finishing the season as world number 1," said the Spaniard.

Source: Marca

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