Rafael Nadal: ‘I had a breakthrough’


Regardless of the outcome, Jack Draper took a lot of learning from his Australian Open first round match against Rafael Nadal. The youthful British tennis player analyzed what his match was like against the top Grand Slam winner. “Playing against Rafa in a place like Laver is something I will remember all my life. It has been an honor to play against him. He is a tennis player that I have always idolized when he was little. Being hand in hand with him here today has been special. What I take with me is that my tennis is getting closer and that on a physical level I still have a lot of work to do”, commented Draper in statements taken up by ‘Punto de Break’. “I came to this tour very excited. I had five good weeks of training with my trainer and I have surprised myself with the level at which I am. Obviously, the physique will take time and patience, but I will give everything I have to put myself in a suitable place to grow”, he added. The Briton ended up suffering from muscular problems that prevented him from finishing the match in good physical shape. “Just cramps. Just when I was at my best in the match, at the start of the third set, I started to suffer from them. It’s something I’ve never felt before. I have to study why. I still have a lot of work ahead of me. When you suffer this against a rival like Rafa it is impossible. I suffered the worst cramps in my hip. It still hurts, but they have calmed down a lot”, acknowledged the current number 38 in the world.

Rafa Nadal is still motivated

Qualified for the second round of the Australian Open when he was predicted hell against the young and dangerous British, Jack Draper, Rafael Nadal has once again shown himself to be more physically solid than his opponent. Data so important for the Spaniard that he even lost weight during the off-season as he revealed in the post-match press conference. “Physically, I did well. I am much thinner than I have been in recent years. I have been working hard in the last few weeks on the physical level so that the results finally come. Today (Monday) I had a breakthrough. I won an important game. When you work hard, results come. Like I said, physically I’m not bad. My legs are more or less fast. In tennis, it’s hard to separate things. When you’re confident and hit without thinking, you’re better positioned on the court and hit better in the right places. Without having all the automatics as standard, I think I’m fast in the field. I train well and I just need to extend the good times.”

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