Q. The great run you have had on hard court this year, what do you attribute it to? Novak in his press conference talked a little bit about you taking the ball little early, aggressive, better hard court player. Can you describe your mentality going into hard courts this year and what might be different?
RAFAEL NADAL: I think you can play aggressive when you are playing well. That’s the first and important thing. Is true I’m trying to take the ball a little bit early, that I worked on my game to be a little bit more aggressive.
But at the same time, is true that in the past when I was playing well on this surface I had good success, too. So it’s not something crazy that changed today that I had the chance to play well on hard, no?
I won, and at the same time I can lost. Like a very tough match against Novak in Montreal, anyone can won the match. Then I have very tough one against Roger in Cincinnati. Anyone can win that match. It was lucky that I won both.
And probably for that reason then I get confident, and I had the chance to keep playing well, keep winning matches against very tough opponents.
Q. A lot of people here in America talk about hard courts being tough on the body. Do you think hard courts are tough on your knees or on your feet or something else?
RAFAEL NADAL: I am not a doctor
Q. Do they affect your knees much?
RAFAEL NADAL: It would be great if some doctors create an opinion on that, but is something, is a conversation that we had hundreds of times in the past.
You know, in the past sometimes I felt not free to talk a lot about these kind of things, because then seems that I was talking because I played much better on clay than on hard.
Today I think I had good success on hard, too. I like the surface. I feel confident playing on hard. I like the hard court.
Q. What does it mean for you to be No. 1 at the end of the year?
RAFAEL NADAL: We will see after here. This tournament, will make the difference. Is true that I am having a great season. I am in a positive position, but nothing decisive having a Grand Slam and 2000 points here.
I am in this position because I played amazing, because I still have three very important zeros in my computer: Australian Open, Wimbledon, and Miami. That’s a lot of zeros to be No. 1 (smiling).
But I am trying. I gonna try. I said since I came back you like a lot to talk about the No. 1 and my goal was to be No. 1. I always say the same: Be No. 1 is not my goal. My goal is be healthy, have the chance to be competitive, and finish the year with good feeling and having the chances to play well. That’s happening.
At the end, you are No. 1 or you are not No. 1. I don’t gonna go and fight for the No. 1. We’ll see at the end of the season. If I am No. 1, it will be amazing, amazing season for me.
If I am not No. 1, it still will be amazing season for me.
Q. If somebody said to you in February when you came back from injury that you’d arrive in New York with a 15‑0 record on hard court, how surprised would you have been?
RAFAEL NADAL: I get tired to ask this question, because every time is the same. Seems like after all the things that happened to me, it seems like it’s strange somebody can think strange that I will repeat the same.
But I think nobody of my family, nobody of my team who is close to me seven months ago thought about come back like this. I feel very lucky. I feel very happy to be in this position. Just can say thank you very much everybody who keep having the confidence with me, the sponsors, people, team, family, fans, you know, all who makes possible this comeback.
All of them have his part in this, probably one of the more emotional seasons in my career without any doubt.
But at the end of the, we are in the US Open. We will have time to analyze my season. We will at the end of the season. The season is not over for me. What is important today, try to be ready for the first round of the US Open. I have tough opponent in front of me like Ryan Harrison, and I am focused on that. The end of the season I will analyze my season.