Rafael Nadal: If That Was My Last French Open Match, I’m At Peace With Myself

by Staff | May 27th, 2024, 4:09 pm
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We don’t know for sure if that was Rafael Nadal‘s last match at the French Open as the 14-time champion won’t confirm it, but if it was the all-time great is ok with it.

Nadal fell in straight sets to an in-form Alexander Zverev 6-3, 7-6(5), 6-3.

“If it’s the last time that I played here, I am in peace with myself,” Nadal said shortly after departing Chatrier. “I tried everything to be ready for this tournament for almost 20 years. And today and the last two years I have been working and going through probably the toughest process in my tennis career with the dream to come back here.

“At least I did. I mean, I lost, but that’s part of the business.”

Zverev overpower Nadal early but Rafa roared back in the second and served to level. Nadal went a break up 2-0 in the third however couldn’t sustain his level. Zverev, who just won the Rome Masters, was solid of the backhand and the forehand and with Nadal’s shots down on the speed, the German took advantage.

“As I said before, have been a positive week for me of practice in all ways,” Nadal added. “In terms of physical performance, too. Without a doubt I felt much better than before. I didn’t feel that limitations. Today in the match the same.

“I felt I was able to move myself much better than in the previous tournaments. But I had a very tough opponent in front. And he played well, I think. Even like this, I had my chances, you know, with serving for the set in the second, then against another 15-40. In the third again a break up and then another 15-40 and 5-3 in the second to 15-30.”

It was just Nadal’s fourth loss at the French Open and first in the opening round. While grass and Wimbledon appears to be unlikely for Rafa, Nadal now targets the Olympics.

“I need to clear my ideas now and see what’s the new calendar for me to try to be ready for Olympics,” Nadal said. “I can’t say anything today, but my main goal now is to play Olympics. That’s going to be here. So I need to prepare myself the proper way to try to arrive here healthy and well-prepared, and then let’s see.”

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