Rafael Nadal Calls Indian Wells A Positive Week

by Tom Gainey | March 21st, 2016, 10:04 am

Rafael Nadal still isn’t winning titles, but at Indian Wells last week he did earn his first victory over a Top 10 player this year. And he played World No. 1 and eventual winner Novak Djokovic very tough for one set.

So by reaching the semifinals and getting some wins, Nadal says if he can keep building confidence, he could be challenging for big titles again in the very near future.

“I think I played well during the week,” Nadal sad. “I won very interesting matches, good ones, fighting. Today was closer than the last couple of times against the best player of world, so was a very positive week for me. That’s the way. I gonna try to follow this way to keep going with this level.

“If I am able to play weeks in a row at this level, then you start to think about the chances to compete for everything.”

Nadal hasn’t won a title since Hamburg last summer, and he hasn’t won a set from Djokovic since his 2014 French Open title, losing the last 13 sets (and 6 matches) to the Serb. But he says he’s finally ready to battle Novak again.

“The way that I was playing I think was a little bit more tactical,” Nadal said. “Was a little bit more the way that I need to play against Novak than what happened the last couple of times that we played so quick and hitting so hard the ball.”

Nadal heads to Miami where’s been to the finals three times but has never won.

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7 Comments for Rafael Nadal Calls Indian Wells A Positive Week

Ben Pronin Says:

I think surviving against Zverev in such classic Nadal fashion gave him some life and re-ignited that spark of fighting till the very end. He weathered and early storm against Nishikori then subdued him. And then he was able to carry that momentum in playing Djokovic tough for a set.

But, it also shows how low Nadal has fallen where playing Djokovic close for just a set is seen as some kind of accomplishment. I’m not sure how much it really changes things. Nadal definitely played better this week but he’s still plenty beatable. If Zverev doesn’t miss that volley then the narrative on the week is completely different.

RZ Says:

@Ben – definitely. Rafa needed a win like the one against Zverev. The win might have had more to do with Zverev whiffing an easy match point, but it still should energize Rafa. As for his match against Djokovic, one close set is much, much better compared to the last time they played.

SG1 Says:

Rafa looked for very formidable in the 1st set. When he came back from 5-2 down to tie it up at 5-5 in the breaker, I thought he was going to make his move. The hole ended up being a little too deep and he couldn’t climb all the way out. In the 2nd set, Novak played a lot more freely and was able to get into all of Rafa’s service games. A free wheeling Novak looks pretty much unbeatable right now.

I do think there are some reasons for optimism if you’re a Rafa fan. Let’s see if he can build on this result in Miami.

nits Says:

I think the positive was
1. beating Nishikori
2. keeping the fight with Djokovic for an hour
3. baking two bagles
4.Forehand down the line has started working & backhand is improving

Negative points: –
1. Giving a set to Muller
2. After winning 2nd set convincingly giving Zverev chance to win the match
3. Serve is still pathetic
$. Forehand is still leaking errors

nits Says:

So some improvement still many issue remains

Green Lady Says:

Nits yeah spot on ….

nits Says:

Thanks @ Greeen Lady

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