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May 19, 2017

Rafael Nadal

Rome, Italy

D. THIEM/R. Nadal

6-4, 6-3

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. What goes wrong today especially in the match?
RAFAEL NADAL: What goes wrong, the opponent played very well. Just congratulate him, because he was better than me this afternoon.

He played great in all aspects. Just well done for him.

Q. What was it that you feel he did particularly better today as opposed to Madrid and Barcelona? Was it that he hugged the baseline a bit closer, was way more aggressive, flattened his strokes out? How did you feel about it during the match?
RAFAEL NADAL: No, he played long. He played very aggressive, hitting the ball very strong.

The court here is probably the smaller on all the center courts on clay, so that's makes the players who play with bigger serve and hitting the ball strong, you know, is a little bit more easier for them to see the option to hit winners.

So he did it. He played very long. He didn't miss a lot. Played high intensity.

Yeah, so in general I was not able to -- today I was not able to push him back. He had the control of the points much more times than me. That's the key of this game.

Q. Is there something you wish you would have done differently?
RAFAEL NADAL: It's obvious that I did not play my best match, is true. I have been playing a lot, you know, and is difficult when every day or for a long time it's true that Madrid and Rome, back to back after playing Barcelona back to back, so is not easy, no, after playing almost every day for the last four weeks, no?

Is normal that one day you don't feel not perfect, and if you are unlucky on that day that you don't feel that well the opponent play unbelievable, so then tomorrow I will be in Mallorca fishing or playing golf or doing another thing (laughter). That's it.

Q. First, how happy are you overall with the amount of preparation you were able to get on clay and all these tournaments going to the French Open? And then secondly, Maria Sharapova didn't get a wildcard into the French Open and she won't get into Wimbledon either because she's going to play the qualifying, she said, today. As a former champ also at both events, what do you think of that?
RAFAEL NADAL: What happened before Roland Garros never is a preparation for me, no? Is true that if you do the things well, then you have more chances in Roland Garros. That's probably what's happened for me. I did the things very well, so I hope to be ready to play my best tennis in Roland Garros.

I never take Monte-Carlo, Barcelona, Rome like preparation, no? Every tournament is so emotional for me. Every tournament is so important. Every tournament by itself is enough important to not consider no one like preparation for nother, no?

Very happy, by the way, that I played during these four weeks, and now remain Roland Garros. I'm going to rest a little bit that I think I deserve, and then I gonna start probably Monday/Tuesday to prepare Roland Garros, try to be best preparation possible during that week before. Is important event for me, obviously.

And in the Sharapova thing, I don't know, no? I think is a personal decision for the tournaments. Here she get a wildcard. Madrid she get a wildcard. In Roland Garros she will not. In Wimbledon she will not?

Q. She's going to play qualifying. She's not asking for one.
RAFAEL NADAL: Is difficult to say anything. For me, any decision will be good, because the tournament has the -- is not about giving a wildcard to Maria or not. Is about which kind of players the Federation decides to give the wildcard.

So they decide on all the players, and they are free to do it. Is not about -- I don't have an opinion. They have the power to do whatever they want.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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