Rafael Nadal Says He’s Playing Well, But Sees Room For Improvement With Backhand And Movement
by Tom Gainey | May 13th, 2013, 1:51 pm

Rafael Nadal returned to the winner’s circle Sunday with a third Mutua Madrid Masters title. After losing to rival Novak Djokovic last month, Nadal was relieved to be back on top of the clay world as we close in on the French Open. And Rafa says he’s playing better but there’s still room for improvement.

“If you ask me if I feel better today than Monte‑Carlo playing I will say probably yes,” Nadal said yesterday. “My forehand is going faster. I am able to play more inside the court. I am serving well, more or less. I need a little bit more with my backhand. I need a little bit more with my movements. I need to keep finding a little bit more calm, more confidence on my movements.

“Today I was more confident than previous days, but I need more days like today. That’s all. I am working hard to try to arrive to this feeling.”

Nadal, who has won five titles in seven events in this comeback, is in Rome this week where the World No. 5 will secure a No. 4 seed in Paris if and only if he wins the title.

Rafa will begin his bid for a seventh Italian Open title Wednesday against Fabio Fognini.

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8 Comments for Rafael Nadal Says He’s Playing Well, But Sees Room For Improvement With Backhand And Movement

Giles Says:

Vamos King. Stay healthy.

M Says:

Seconding Giles. Nothing to add.

Kimberly Says:

He is right. Well said. He did play well. He needs to hit that level more consistently though. But at the same time don’t want to peak to early. Do any Rafa fans have concern he is overplaying?

Humble Rafa Says:

I am like fine wine. Get better with playing more. There is no such thing as playing too much.

Ball bounce needs improvement also. Backhand needs work. Otherwise Humble Highness is good to go.

harry Says:

@HR: it does not sound like Rafa anymore :-) For e.g., one way to change it is: “Otherwise Humble Highness is good to go, no?”

Michael Says:

Well, if Nadal says there is still room for improvement then it must be nerve wrecking for other players. Already his level on Clay is so high that even if he plays below his best, he is able to beat the best of players. All said and done, this is not good news for fellow players.

alison Says:

Rafas in such a rich vein of form lately,but like Kimberly im slightly concerned hes playing too much tennis lately,and i can only hope it doesnt come back to bite him,Rome this week,then RG,Halle,Wimbledon is alot of tennis,i wouldnt want him to undo all his hard work that hes put in,i hope this form continues throughout the season,i dont mean winning every tourney he enters or making a final,just to have a full solid season would be great.

Giles Says:

Rafa has said he needs to play matches!
Am sure he knows what he is doing!
Vamos Rafa!!

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