- Nadal Ready To Play The Patient Game (via ATP World Tour)
“‘If’ doesn’t exist in sport,” he told journalists when pressed on whether he would have gone on to beat Tomas Berdych had he sneaked out the third-set tie-break. “If, if, if – never comes. The thing is you have to do it. I didn’t have the chance to play the fourth; I lost the third, so that’s it. That’s sport. I lost the third. He’s happier than me in the locker room.”
- Rafa tells it straight after early exit (via Australian Open)
There was speculation that a lingering injury might have explained Nadal’s lacklustre movement in the first two sets, his attitude and body language as flat as those American footballs everyone’s bothering about. He had tape on his hands for the first time all tournament. He was hardly sweating at his usual level. Come the third, after popping a pill, he improved. But, as is his way, when asked, he refused to give it any detail. “I am feeling well,” he insisted. “That’s it. That’s part of the things that happen sometimes during the matches, but nothing important to say. Just was not my day.
I want to live in a world where Nadal keeps playing — keeps questing, keeps battling the elements, hunting for something I can’t quite see — for a long, long time. I want him to show us what tennis can be. He will be back, and he will be the favorite at the French Open.
- What If (via tennis.com)
Hopefully we’ll get a chance over the next few months to see how he does when he’s not making a comeback. For now, he leaves Australia with positives and negatives: Yes, he lost to a player he has owned, but his health seems to be intact, and South American clay in his immediate future.
- Rafael Nadal’s Australian Open drubbing no disaster, admits uncle Toni (via sport360.om)
“Being down two sets was too big of a gap. We lost the match in the first two sets. The truth is that Rafael served bad, he felt a bit nervous and had some double faults. And Berdych came out with the idea not to rally much and to attack more.”
- Nadal, lecciones de una derrota (via El Pais)
Nadal aún busca a ese Nadal. No juega con su mejor versión. Tiene tiempo para cumplir con su gran objetivo de 2015: llegar a la primavera en disposición de competir la gira de tierra batida, que culmina en Roland Garros, pareciéndose a sí mismo.
Taking out the French Opens, these are Nadal’s Slam results since Wimbledon in 2012: 2R, absent, absent, 1R, won, F, 4R, absent, QF. Tomas Berdych or any other player would take those results, but for Nadal they’re disappointments.
- Understanding Nadal’s Lopsided Loss to Berdych (via Tennis View Magazine)
Comebacks aren’t easy. This is a lesson that most Nadal fans haven’t really had to learn, although the more dedicated ones have probably noticed it already. Comebacks aren’t easy.
But in the end this wasn’t a bad tournament for Nadal. Asking him to win a hard court title after playing just eight matches since Wimbledon was too much of an ask even for the great Rafa Nadal.
- 2015 Australian Open Fashion Aces: The Men (via tennis.com)
Never afraid of pink, Rafael Nadal rocks it in Melbourne, with his own bright yellow Nike pops remaining complementary, not glaring. His shorts are in rare form—which is to say increasingly short form—but I’ve yet to hear anyone complain.
- Rafael Nadal loses to Tomas Berdych in straight sets
- Nadal v Berdych (via Australian Open)
- Rafael Nadal’s press conference
- AO 2015: Rafa Day 9 Practice Pics (via Grand Slam Gal)
- Rafa gets ready (via Australian Open)