VIDEO: Rafael Nadal First Round Press Conference | Wimbledon 2018

Rafael Nadal speaks to the media after his win over Dudi Sela.

Q. How did you experience this first round?
RAFAEL NADAL: Good. Good start, of course. Good result. Yeah, of course I did things very well, and other things that I have room to improve. But you are not at all times happy, of course? It’s a good start for me, that’s it.

Q. Is that a stat sheet you have in your hand?

Q. The sheet you have.
RAFAEL NADAL: They just give me now here.

Q. Is there anything that stands out for you?
RAFAEL NADAL: The only time that I had the statistics is just way of the door until here. I really am not that quick (smiling).

Q. What areas did you feel you performed well on today? How good did you feel out there?
RAFAEL NADAL: Good, I think. I did a lot of games good with my serve, and other ones that I suffered a little bit. I played bad game with my serve, of course, first game of the third.

But I happy more or less with the forehand. I went to the net quite often. Yes, of course I can improve on the return side. I think the return was the worst thing that I did this afternoon.

That’s it, no? There is not many strokes to talk.

Q. Wimbledon has said they’re going to probably introduce the 25-second shot clock, like the US Open are doing this year. Do you think that’s unnecessary? Does it worry you at all?
RAFAEL NADAL: I have 32. I don’t know for how long I going to play. Hopefully for a long time. But is something that is not bothering me. 

Personally, I don’t feel that that’s going to bother me. In terms of the sport, depends. If you want to see a quick game without thinking, well done. If you want to keep playing in a sport that you need to think, you need to play with more tactics, you want to have long and good rallies, then of course you are going the wrong way.

But seems like sometimes is only about the business, so… I can’t support this, no, because I don’t feel the matches that stays for the history of our sport went that quick (snapping fingers).

I don’t remember emotional match that the total time of the match have been two hours. All the matches that have been important in the history of our sport have been four hours, five hours, 3:45.

To play these kind of matches you need time between points because you cannot play points in a row with long rallies, with emotional points, having only 25 seconds between points.

Q. Before the tournament you posted a photo of you cooking. How important is it for you to be able to live in a house here? What are the other charms of this tournament?
RAFAEL NADAL: Nothing new. I live in a house when I am at home (smiling). I am used to be here in a house. Is not about how important is. Is about what I am used to do. I am doing this probably since 2006.

I spend hours here on the club. Is good to have the house close to here, to have the right rest. I think for this event, works good have the house close here.

Q. I hope I’m not bringing up some bad memories. How much did Spain’s exit from the World Cup affect your preparations for Wimbledon? I know you’re a big football fan.
RAFAEL NADAL: Still enjoying the World Cup. I watched two great matches yesterday. I going to watch this beautiful match at 7 this afternoon. World Cup continues without us.

That’s the sport. Probably is sad to say, but if we are not there is because we didn’t made the things enough well to be there. In the sport, in the highest level of sport, when you play well, even playing very well you can lose, without playing well the chances of win are less.

In that case, yeah, was not the best match for us.

Q. Is there anyone you want to win now? Anybody you support now that Spain are out?
RAFAEL NADAL: I support the good football.

Q. I understand you haven’t played any competitive matches on grass before Wimbledon. Is that right?
RAFAEL NADAL: Totally right.

Q. Why was that? Why did you not do any practice on grass before Wimbledon?
RAFAEL NADAL: No, I did a good practice. Not official matches, but I did practice, yeah.


Q. Yes.
RAFAEL NADAL: Because if I play too much, then I come here, all the questions are: Why you are not play less? Now I play less and the question is: Why you are not playing?

The thing is easy. I am just joking. I don’t do my calendar thinking about what you asking, I just making a joke.

I had a long clay court season, a lot of matches. As you know, I had lot of problems in terms of physical injuries during my career. Of course, I will love to play on Queen’s. That was my schedule agenda. But after playing the final of Roland Garros and playing so many matches on clay, for my knees, the drastic changes are not good. So we decided to stop couple of days, then to start step by step on grass.

I did the same last year. Worked well. I lost here in the fourth round. But I felt I was in a position to fight for important things. I repeat: for me the most important thing is being healthy. That’s the priority always.

Q. Something you did today that you have a lot of experience with is walking out to Centre Court at Wimbledon. What is that experience like for you?
RAFAEL NADAL: To walk out on the Centre Court of Wimbledon?

Q. Yes.
RAFAEL NADAL: I was lucky. Was not the first time. Is always special. Is a great tournament, special way to go on the Centre Court. The club is just fantastic. I enjoy the fact I have a chance to play in the Centre Court. It’s great.

Q. How about the walk to the court, what is that experience like? What do you see and feel?
RAFAEL NADAL: What I see? People and a beautiful club. That’s all.

Q. Sadly we all know you’ve had so many injuries. Today Feliciano set the record for 66 straight Grand Slam tournaments played. Can you talk about that. Is that a significant record? What makes him special as a man and player?
RAFAEL NADAL: Feliciano?

Q. Yes.
RAFAEL NADAL: He’s a good friend. Yeah, is good for him because when you have so many Grand Slams in a row, is because you didn’t have injuries.

Of course, is a little bit of luck, of course. Happy for him that he has this. Is the longest record?

Q. Yes.
RAFAEL NADAL: Is good to have this record for him.

Q. The sunny weather, how much harder does that make the courts play? How much of a difference does that make for you?
RAFAEL NADAL: No, I like these conditions. Being honest, the life is much better with the sunshine there. Is happier. For the spectators, for the tournament, for the players, is better this kind of weather.

Q. Is the ball bouncing higher than in some years?
RAFAEL NADAL: No, I don’t know. I can’t compare this year because I don’t remember last year. Since I arrived here, I play with this sunshine, so…

Source: Wimbledon


  1. Rafa well done in your interview.

    All the best for your game today.

    Love and prayers,

    Alaine XXSydneyXXAustraliaXX

  2. Wishing you all the Luck in the world for tomorrow Rafa. Am looking forward to see you on centre court again for a great match. Vamos Rafa ☘🇮🇪💚☘🎾🎾

  3. I love the way Rafa handles interviews and interviewers. No putting words in HIS mouth. Another of uncle Toni’s early lessons. 😃

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