Rafael Nadal: I’m Not Happy How I Played the Madrid Final [Video]
by Tom Gainey | May 10th, 2011, 10:56 am

Despite his loss to Novak Djokovic in the Madrid final, Rafael Nadal sounds very optimistic about his chances his week in Rome and at the French Open.

Nadal had his 37-match clay win streak snapped by the Serb on Sunday in Madrid. Nadal says he wasn’t happy with how he played that match and that the altitude wasn’t a help. He says the conditions are better in Rome.

Rafa opens his bid for a sixth title at the Foro Italico with a tough match possibly against against Madrid semifinalist Thomaz Bellucci tomorrow.

Nadal is also in danger of losing his No. 1 ranking to Djokovic if things break right.

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12 Comments for Rafael Nadal: I’m Not Happy How I Played the Madrid Final [Video]

van orten Says:

real clay ??? what makes people think nole cannot beat nadal on a slow clay surface…he didn’t win against in madrid because of surface speed…after all djoker is not federer who needs speed to generate lots of winners…no djoker grinded nadal down like a real hard core clay courter ..and that ladies and gentleman scares not only nadal

jane Says:

Note sure… Nole has had close matches versus Rafa at Hamburg (08) and Monte Carlo (09). But I actually hope he saves his energy for the two up-coming slams.

Michel Says:

Why didn’t the interviewer followed up on his remakrs about not being happy with his final and semie in Madrid? I rather hear Rafa explain to us what he could should have done differiently then give praise to the new centre court. It is not that he normally give much insight to what he is thinking about a match or his gameplan.

Kimmi Says:

Not happy the way he played in madrid? what about IW and miami? I bet he is very happy the way he played in MC and barcelona.

I love there is a little challenge on clay this season. everyone wants to improve. good for tennis. good for us fans.

nole now knows how to beat rafa. grind him down, be patient..be aggressive. Cant wait for another nole vs rafa meeting.

Ben Pronin Says:

I don’t agree with the idea that Djokovic beats Nadal by grinding him down. That’s a big part of what helps him win, but his game plan is to be offensive as much as possible. He stands on top of the baseline and works the point short angles and deep flat shots. He’s matching Nadal in the defense department but it’s not like he’s running around 15 feet behind the baseline waiting for a mistake.

skeezerweezer Says:

Yeah Ben me said when Novak came on the scene his Groundies are the best, technically speaking, to come around in since Agassi. He had the technique to play on the baseline and hit those amazing shots but the belief to execute it, comes within, as the great yoda grendal once said. So what is left? Between the ears and stamina. He seems to have accomplished both now, so far. Finally. What is remarkable is the comments from the tennis techies up here is that Novak has big romm for improvement in other areas. He still doesn’t have the serve down, yet, but getting closer, and his transition and net play is …..wellll…..non-existent. It is too bad for him and his fans that his game is taking hold at 24 instead of 21/22. With only 4 slams a year, every year…he has to really roll from here on out to make his mark on the History Tennis Channel…he has come of age, and there is now way he should ever be walking on the court against Rafa & Fed again and feel like he can’t beat them.

RE; what you & Kimmi crossed swords about, it is probably a little of both, no?

Kimmi Says:

so grinding is standing 15 feet behind the baseline and wait for mistake? i thought grinding is long baseline rallies..we had a lot of those on sunday.

skeezerweezer Says:


Nuetral rallies ( and defensive posture ) are usually from 6-10+ behind the baseline. Taking an offensive posture, you hug the baseline and you can take the ball on the rise and dictate rallies, taking away time from your opponet, but doin that is the hard thing…..grinding it out to me is a mental attitude…but others may think differently

Kimmi Says:

mental attitude skeezer..interesting.

that would make my post above (8:17pm) perfect as djoko showed a lot of that.

well, grinding out or not..nole knows what he needed to do, and the execution was perfect.

anon Says:

Great thing about Nadal is when you see him doing something wrong, i.e. playing too defensively, the next time you see him he has always corrected that mistake. He’s very self-aware (and his Uncle will go down as one of the all-time best coaches).

Dory Says:

I am beginning to think the only thing Nole lacked was mental strength, confidence and maturity. Just when everyone had given up almost on him growing and thought he had plateaued, his time has started. With confidence and mental strength in his bag, he’ll dominate now. Of course, RF and Nadal aren’t going to sit idle.

Dory Says:

Wow Lorenzi takes it to a tie break!!!

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