Rafa Nadal: “The question is always to find myself”

Two hours of training was enough for Rafael Nadal to adapt to the clay of Barcelona. The Spaniard came to the city, took the racket and went to runway 18 to start the rallies with his coaches, Carlos Moya and Francis Roig. They were on track for a long time until Nadal began to feel comfortable in the club’s land. “Coming to this tournament is always something special for me,” he said. This time, however, he arrives at the Open Banc Sabadell-Trofeo Godó after having suffered an unexpected defeat in the semifinals of the Monte-Carlo tournament against the Italian Fabio Fognini 6-4 and 6-2.
“The question is always to find myself,” Nadal said at a press conference he gave at the Palau de la Música, where he and Kei Nishikori made a brief rally in an improvised minipist on stage. “I come from a difficult year, in which chained injuries have hurt me a lot,” said the 32-year-old Spaniard. “However, when I was good, we worked hard and hard and things went very well. This can lead to cheating. People may believe that it is easy to achieve, but it is not. On the contrary, I have gone through personally complicated moments, but I always look to the future with enthusiasm, work and a positive attitude to give the best of myself “.

Nadal suffered an injury to his right knee in the final part of last season that forced him to retire a few months of the circuit. He did not return to the Australian Open, where he reached the final, which he lost to Djokovic. He played then in Acapulco and fell in eighths against Kyorgios, evidencing physical problems. In Indian Wells he could not face the semifinal match against Roger Federer because of a new right knee injury. And he did not return to the circuit until the clay. In Monte Carlo, last week, seemed to be in good condition, after having done an intense job in his club Manacor. But Fognini surprised him in the semifinals.

“If it was the worst game? You can always fall further down, “replied Nadal. “However, in my opinion I played one of the worst games of this year. You can fool yourself by looking for extenuating circumstances, but the truth is that. I came from playing two good games at the beginning, but in the semifinals I played badly. I was not at my usual level. And I came to Barcelona wanting to do well and recover the good feelings, because this tournament is always very special for me. It is part of the history of Spanish tennis and my own sports career. “