(AAP) – Rafael Nadal will start preparing for Wimbledon next week with practice sessions on the grass courts used for the Mallorca Open, a WTA event in Spain, tournament organisers have confirmed.
After extending his record haul of French Open titles to 11 by winning Roland Garros last Sunday, Rafa withdrew from the Queen’s Club Championships, a key Wimbledon tune-up to be played in London from June 18-24. In announcing that decision on Wednesday, he said his doctors had advised him to rest.
The Mallorca Open courts will be played that same week in the small town of Santa Ponsa, located about an hour by car from Rafa’s hometown of Manacor.
Rafa is then expected to travel to London to continue his preparations for tennis’ grass grand slam event, which begins on July 2.
Rafael Nadal has held on to his No. 1 ranking after cruising to a record 11th French Open title on Sunday at Roland Garros. He sits barely ahead of No. 2 Roger Federer with a 100-point lead of 8,770 to 8,670.
Alexander Zverev is No. 3, nearly 3,000 rankings points further back. Juan Martin del Potro jumped two spots to No. 4 by reaching his first French Open semifinal in nine years, and Thiem rose one place to No. 7 by reaching his first Grand Slam final.
If Federer reaches the final in Stuttgart, he will regain the No. 1 spot in the ATP Rankings on 18 June.
The final of the men’s singles tournament at Roland Garros 2018 between defending champion Rafael Nadal and Dominic Thiem will take place on Sunday on Court Philippe Chatrier at Stade Roland Garros.
Date: June 10, 2018
Match time: 3 PM local time / 9 AM EDT – New York, Montreal / 2 PM BST – United Kingdom / 3 PM CET – Spain, France, Germany, Italy / 11 PM AEDT – Melbourne. To convert to your local time, use this website.
Rafa on playing Thiem:
He’s an amazing player. He beat me this year in Madrid. He has big power, he’s playing with big confidence. I know I have to play at my best. I believe I can be ready for that final. It’s going to be a tough one.
If I play well, I normally have my chances. If I don’t play well, it will be almost impossible, because I play against a player that’s going too well.
Rafael Nadal is one win away from his 11th French Open championship after earning a 6-4, 6-1, 6-2 semifinal victory over Juan Martin del Potro on Friday at Stade Roland Garros in Paris. He beat the Argentine in just over two hours.
Rafa was in full control as Del Potro wilted under the relentless pressure of his whipping trademark forehand. Del Potro pulled up with a hip complaint as he trailed 2-1 in the first set, but despite clear discomfort he fought on to complete the match in two hours and 14 minutes.
After the match, Rafa said:
The first set was very difficult. Juan Martin had a lot of opportunities and I was a little bit lucky to win it. It’s incredible to play here. I feel very fortunate to play in front of this crowd. Without working hard and without going through tough moments and without still being focused on your passion of the game, it is impossible to be here. Still being here is something I never dreamed about.
Dominic Thiem is an amazing player. He beat me in Madrid this year and he has great power. I have to play my best. I have to improve a little bit. I believe I can be ready for that final. It’s going to be a tough one but I will fight all the way.
Rafa will face off with Austrian seventh seed Dominic Thiem on Sunday for the trophy. He has never fallen in a Roland Garros final. The left-hander is a perfect 10-0.
Defending champion Rafael Nadal and Juan Martin del Potro face off in the semifinals of Roland Garros 2018 on Friday. The Argentine reached the semis in Paris for the first time since 2009 by beating Marin Cilic in four sets.
Our champ has never lost once advancing to the semi-finals at Roland Garros, lifting the Coupe des Mousquetaires on all 10 occasions.
Date: June 8, 2018
Match time: Not before 3.30 PM local time / 9.30 AM EDT – New York, Montreal / 2.30 PM BST – United Kingdom / 3.30 PM CET – Spain, France, Germany, Italy / 11.30 PM AEST – Melbourne. To convert to your local time, use this website.
Rafa on playing Delpo:
He has fantastic potential. Aggressive game from the end of the court, the baseline.
And I have to play aggressively. If I play defensively and I don’t take intensity, I will lose.
Delpo on facing Rafa:
Tomorrow I will try to play a match as I did in a different surface against Rafa, but he’s lefty and what I say before my match against Ramos, a lefty player has advantage with me because he can find easily my backhand, and he knows what my backhand is at the moment.
But anyways, I will try to do my best, to play my best tennis, and see if I can do a good match.