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August 16, 2005

Rafael Nadal


THE MODERATOR: Andre from the ATP is here to translate if we need some help. Questions, please.

Q. You fought very hard. Do you think you were a little unlucky to come up against someone playing like that in the first match?

RAFAEL NADAL: Yes, I think I don't have good luck in the draw. I say that in Montreal because today I was play against Tomas Berdych, so I know he's very good player. For the first round if you play against any player when he play with a little bit topspin, you can improve your game. Because is the same court, but is not the same. Is same surface, but not always is the same because here is a little bit more slowly. The ball with the humidity stay little bit more tough. So the changes, and I am little bit tired. I don't have the same explosion when I run. So for that, and because for -- because Tomas Berdych play very, very good match. So for that I lose today.

Q. Did you hurt your hamstring? You were getting it massaged at one point.

RAFAEL NADAL: Yeah, I have very (charge?) here, very tired, yeah.

Q. Was there anything different that you could have done, do you think, to save that match?

RAFAEL NADAL: No, I have all. Because today I can't play more. I know is the first match. Change conditions. And with all change, I have four matchpoints or three matchpoints, unbelievable. Because he serve one, the first, he serve in the middle unbelievable; I can't return. The second, he serve very good first serve; I return here, and he play one forehand unbelievable, winner. And after, in the third, he mistake the first serve and in the second serve he serve ace in the second serve. So I can do nothing. I don't have good luck in the matchpoints and in the break points for 5-3 and 4-3 and serve on. Berdych don't have good luck, too, because I have four points and is the same history so... I can't do it. I am...

ANDRE SILVA: (From Spanish.) He was very comfortable with himself. He knew it was very tough to come here, a change of conditions, and the first match against Berdych is very hard. He did everything he could to win, but he came up short. He was very confident about himself and knows how hard it was. For a guy like Federer, who is the best in the world on this surface, the same thing happened to him last year when he came here and played against Hrbaty. So for me, it was not the best hard court in the world. It was also difficult.

Q. How well do you know each other? He talked about playing you when you were 12 years old, seeing you growing up together on the Juniors circuit.

RAFAEL NADAL: Yeah, we know because we play in the World Cup for teams, so we know. He is one or less than me. So we know, we know all about. We play three times in the Juniors, I think.

Q. It would benefit you to have some longer rallies. He was obviously trying to shorten the points. Is that a key to what he was doing, that he was able to have some short points and have some winners?

RAFAEL NADAL: Yes, of course. I am -- I try do the rallies. But, you know, if I have a little bit -- if I feel little bit more good physical, I can improve my game because I can play little bit more aggressive. But I don't feel very well. Physically I have this problem, too. And he play very tough. If he play very tough and I feel very good physically, I can play with him, be more aggressive. But today I can't because he play very tough and I can do nothing.

Q. Did you not feel well physically beside your hamstring? Were you just tired?

RAFAEL NADAL: Yes, tired.

ANDRE SILVA: Physically tired. Didn't have the same explosion to go to the balls. Also couldn't see the ball as well as he was seeing it last week. Maybe mentally a little tired, too.

RAFAEL NADAL: I think Berdych is one future Top 10 player, I think. He play very well. He is very young.

Q. Is it your first tournament on the American soil since the French Open, your victory?


Q. Could you tell us a little bit about this American crowd and your popularity today.

RAFAEL NADAL: Yeah. But, no, because I arrive yesterday in the morning. I only stay today, today morning in the hotel preparing for the match. And in the court, well, very, very good atmosphere. But I don't feel nothing especial because I lost in the first round so I can't have time, no? I don't have time.

Q. Many people call out your name by your nickname Rafa. Some kids, I was watching Hewitt's match this afternoon, and one little girl was waiting to get an autograph. When she heard that you were practicing, she left Hewitt right away and ran for your practice game. Has fame changed your life?

RAFAEL NADAL: No, I don't think. I think I am the same. I want to continue doing the same. So I think the famous -- I am a little bit more famous now, but I don't have change in my life. I live in the same place, I have the same friends. Nothing, nothing change for me, and I don't want change.

Q. When we were waiting for you to come, we were joking that Rafael Nadal spends a lot of time on the mobile phone talking to friends.

RAFAEL NADAL: I don't speak a lot with my friends when I stay here. I speak one time in the week normally, and today I was speak with my uncle and my father. Nothing more.

Q. Do you feel you have played a little bit too much? Do you feel tired?

RAFAEL NADAL: I don't play too much, but I won (smiling). So I play too much because I won the tournament. I play six matches. But I don't play too much tournaments, I know. I play too much because I play ten finals this year. For that I play too much matches, but not too much tournaments.

Q. How will you prepare for the US Open now?

RAFAEL NADAL: Yeah, I think I go to Mallorca and to Spain tomorrow I think because if I stay one week, two weeks here before the US Open, I think is better for the mental I stay in Mallorca for one week, and then to come to the US Open with a lot of illusion. And I gonna practice in hard court in Mallorca for one week, and after I go four days before to New York for prepare better the US Open.

Q. You're not worried about the time difference, jetlag?

RAFAEL NADAL: Yeah, is not easy, but I think you can put the good things and the bad things. And for me I think now is better go to Mallorca.

Q. So that's the good part of losing the match; you can go home now?

RAFAEL NADAL: Always I can watch the good thing, so I am positive. I am a little bit disappointed because I lost today and I don't like lost the matches. I have four matchpoints. A little bit more tough for me. But now I think I can stop, I can prepare the US Open with calm, and that's the positive. I can go to Mallorca. That's positive, too, because I can watch my friends, my family.

I am disappointed for the match, and I am happy because I can prepare better the US Open.

Q. The last time you played him it was also a three-setter. Do you enjoy playing him? What is it like playing him?

RAFAEL NADAL: Is difficult match. Is a difficult match. He play good and I can win and I can lose. In Bastad in the final I win; today I lose. So it's okay. Every match is difficult. Every match have difficult moments. Every player is a good player because we have a lot of...

ANDRE SILVA: The feud is equal. Tennis feud, the players are all equal.

RAFAEL NADAL: And if you want to stay 100%, you can lose every, every match. And if you stay 100%, you can lose, too. So that's the real.

Q. Do you think this could be the start of maybe another new rivalry on the tour if you face each other more often?

RAFAEL NADAL: No, I don't think so. Nothing else, because we are a lot of players. We are a lot of players. All players play good, and I don't like the rivality in the two players because we are...

ANDRE SILVA: We have all these good players on tour that should all be respected, so there is no one rivalry.

Q. Will Tony be with you at the US Open?

RAFAEL NADAL: Yes, of course.

End of FastScripts….

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