The facts: Nadal hasn’t won a title in nearly eight months. While he has struggled against a more compete ATP field, Nadal has conceded his confidence, particularly on his famed forehand, has lacked. He has made headway — notably reaching the final four at Indian Wells — but hasn’t exuded the fearlessness that led him to 14 Grand Slam titles. If there is a sliver of good news, the long clay season is just more than a week away.
Gilbert’s take: I’d be more concerned if he were injured. But Rafa was clearly sick, and these things happen. In the locker room, it circulates. Certainly, it was disappointing coming off a decent showing at Indian Wells. A couple more W’s in Miami would have given him more momentum heading into the clay season. He has been struggling for more than a year, but if he can stay healthy, I see Nadal finding answers quickly on the dirt.
“[I]t’s good to have combination of styles, it’s good to have different players that fights for the important things, and one or another can win.”
While Nadal said that had largely been the case since he reached the top of the game, he also suggested that Djokovic has taken too much in charge—to his credit, of course. “[For a] year and a half, two years one is dominating maybe too much,” said Nadal. “But he deserves.”
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