RAFAEL NADAL - A CHAMPION ON MANY LEVELS
Rafa Nadal is young, genuine and deeper than we know, I suspect. It has been a difficult year for Rafa. Hopefully, his knees will allow him to come back and play his beloved tennis.
Besides his hard work and talent on the tennis court, Rafa is admired for his humility, straight talk with tact, kindness and a giving spirit.
All the best to Rafa and his family.
Next possible tournament
August 8 - 16, 2009
Rafa will decide in the next few days if he will be playing in Montreal.
From Rafa's homepage:
Interview - first half
Uploaded by gandaines2
July 29th, 2009
Lorenzo Mila and Rosana Romero from TVE (the leading news channel in Spain) interviewed Rafa Nadal yesterday at his summer house in Porto Cristo.
During the show, Rafa spoke about his days away from the tennis courts, about his recovery, his return to the tennis circuit, but most importantly, how he is...
So how is Rafa Nadal?
“Good, the truth is that I feel good. But also, I have to wait and see how I continue to recover because I’ve only been back training for a week and a half and you always feel a bit better anemically. You start with lots of hope, but again, the real test would be to see how I go when I really push my knees and I think that is likely to happen in the upcoming days. So I hope it’s all good,” said Rafa.
“What happened was that I was in a lot of pain for a while, when I came back from Miami and I was training in Manacor, I started to feel a strong pain, especially in my right knee. It was a different kind of pain [to what I’ve experienced before], so I took off the bandages in my knees,” he explained…”and everyone thought that it was because I felt great, but the problem was that it didn’t hurt there anymore, now it hurt in the superior end of the knee cap. And well, the bandages weren’t helping me at all and that’s when it all started to get worse, little by little.”
Video: Courtesy of TVE.
Uploaded by gandaines2
Click in the header to read the full report!
Rafa said that he should have rested after Rome to play at his best in Roland Garros, but he wanted to play the Masters Series Tournament in Madrid, which turned out to be a big mistake. At the same time, he admitted that he had “been playing almost every day with an anti-inflammatory and I had too much pain to play well at both tournaments that were important for me, Roland Garros and Wimbledon."
"I decided it was best to stop and recover," because "you lose the drive to go back to train and compete, because you are not with the same energy, little by little it destroys you," he explained.
According to Rafa, it is "knowing how to overcome difficult situations or face them with a positive mindset and learn to enjoy suffering," that has kept him going. "It is a virtue that I’ve always had, I like to suffer, I have learned to enjoy suffering and I believe that is what helps me."
At the same time, the support and love he has received from his fans and family has been the one highlight out of this painful experience. “Without doubt, the best memory in the last two months has been the support I have received from everyone. From my website, where they’ve sent me tons of messages. I have nothing but gratitude for their gesture”.
So what has Rafa been doing in the last two months?
"I have spent more hours on the couch these past two months than in the past four years", he confessed.
This time away from competition has also allowed Rafa to follow other aspects of the sport today, politically and economically, "I've been able to follow many things, to see how colleagues have won some very important things, such as Contador at the Tour of France, or Pau Gasol in the NBA when he won 'the ring'. Of course I'm interested in the [economic] crisis and also in politics, but I never like to talk about those things".
The four-time Roland Garros champion said that his "dream" is to return to the ATP for the August 9 start of the Montreal Masters Series event, "I would like to come back in Montreal in a week and a half. I [will] have to force the knees and just see how far I can go."
"My main objective is not to regain the number one ranking. My main goal is to be well and happy to be playing tennis," Rafa said.
"I’m mentally ready to return now!"
Nadal: "Mi problema real son las rodillas"
The google English translation is below the Spanish text here.
ELENA VILLAÉCIJA 28.07.2009Tras dos meses de parón, Rafa Nadal piensa ya en su vuelta a las pistas. El tenista ha concedido una entrevista exclusiva a Televisión Española, en la que quiso desmentir los rumores que apuntan a problemas familiares (la separación de sus padres) como la causa de su bajón físico. "Soy humano y es difícil de asimilar, pero no es lo que me ha afectado, el problema real eran las rodillas", aseguró.
Nadal aseguró que lo tiene "casi totalmente superado" y quiso aclarar que "eso sucedió hace varios meses y yo gané en Indian Wells, en Barcelona y en Roma. Sinceramente, mi problema real son las rodillas".
Después de estar dos meses alejado de la competición, el manacorense afronta con incertidumbre su vuelta. "El respeto que tengo por mis rivales hace que tenga muchas más dudas antes de empezar un torneo. Yo ahora mismo soy un mar de dudas".
Aunque su objetivo es competir en el torneo de Montreal, que arranca el próximo 8 de agosto, Nadal quiere "estar seguro de estar bien para volver a entrar en una pista". Por eso, no se atreve a fijar una fecha para su vuelta. "No lo sé ni yo, me gustaría estar en Montreal en una semana y media. Voy a forzar para probarme antes". "Me siento preparado mentalmente, cuando esté bien voy a volver para darlo todo", declaró.
Lo que sí aseguró es que la decisión de su vuelta es libre y que nunca ha "tenido presión para volver", ni de los patrocinadores ni de la ATP.
No le preocupa el número uno
Su principal preocupación no es recuperar el número uno, ahora en posesión de Federer, sino "estar bien, estar feliz jugando al tenis y mejorar, y para eso tengo que estar bien de las rodillas".
El tenista Rafa Nadal,que ha estado dos meses parado y que volvió a los entrenamientos hace apenas unas semanas aseguró que se encuentra bien, aunque "hay que ver cómo evoluciono cuando fuerce de verdad las rodillas, que será en los siguientes días, y ojalá que sea buena la evolución".
Nadal comentó cómo empezaron sus problemas físicos. "Llevaba varios meses con dolores. Cuando volví de Miami me empezó a doler la rodilla derecha, era un dolor distinto. Me quité las vendas y todo el mundo pensó que estaba perfecto, pero el problema es que ya no me dolía abajo, me dolía la parte superior de la rótula".
Nadal confiesa que a partir de entonces "todo empezó a empeorar, se fueron poniendo parches al dolor" hasta que dijo basta. "Decidí que era mejor parar y recuperarme" porque llega un momento en el que "uno pierde la ilusión, no te ves con la misma energía, te va destrozando".
El tenista admite que llegó a jugar durante mucho tiempo con dolor. "He estado jugando casi todos los días con antiinflamatorios y con infiltración algún día en Roland Garros", razón por la que llegó "demasiado cascado a los dos torneos más importantes: Roland Garros y Wimbledon".
Nadal reconoce que ha aprendido a convivir con el sufrimiento. "Sufres demasiado en cada momento, a mí me gusta sufrir, personalmente. He aprendido a disfrutar sufriendo. Creo que es una virtud que tengo. Cuando cada día vas entrenando mal, cuando cada partido se convierte en una historia que no sabes cómo vas a estar, la cabeza está llena de dudas".
"No he sabido cuándo parar"
El mallorquín ha estado dos meses parado, dos meses que reconoce que han sido muy difíciles. "Al principio sin ilusión de hacer muchas cosas, estaba tocado mentalmente, sentía que no había hecho las cosas como debía".
Y es que Nadal reconoce que debió parar antes y que no debió disputar el Masters de Madrid. "Fue un error mío. El máximo responsable de mí mismo soy yo. El problema es mío por no saber valorar cuándo parar, cuándo descansar", "quise jugar en Madrid y a toro pasado creo que fue un error".
En estos dos meses de parón, el manacorense ha estado centrado en su recuperación, trabajando más de cinco horas al día con máquinas, aunque también ha tenido tiempo para descansar. "He estado más horas en el sofá en estos dos meses que en los últimos cuatro años", bromeó.
También habló su rival y actual número uno, Roger Federer, de quien confesó que no le ha llamado en estos dos meses de parón. "No creo que su objetivo sea el número uno", sino "volver a ganar algún Grand Slam".
Al margen de los temas deportivos, Nadal habló también repasó otros temas de actualidad como la situación económica, la crisis y, madridista reconocido, habló sobre los últimos fichajes del conjunto blanco.
Google translation to a above Spanish:
ELENA VILLAÉCIJA 28.07.2009Tras two months to stop, think and Rafa Nadal in his return to the slopes. The tennis player has granted an exclusive interview with Spanish television, which sought to dispel rumors that point to family problems (separation of parents) as the cause of his physical decline. "I'm human and it is difficult to digest, but not what I was concerned, the real problem was the knee," he said.
Nadal said it has "almost totally" and wanted to clarify that "this happened several months ago and I won at Indian Wells, Barcelona and Rome. Frankly, my knees are the real problem."
After being two months away from the competition, the uncertainty facing manacorense his return. "The respect I have for my rival has made many more questions before you start a tournament. I'm now a sea of doubts."
Although his goal is to compete in the tournament in Montreal, which starts next August 8, Nadal wants to "be sure to be well back into a track." They do not dare to set a date for his return. "I do not know me nor, I would be in Montreal in a week and a half. I'm going to try to force sooner." "I am mentally prepared, well when I am going back to give everything," he said.
What I said is that the decision to return is free and that has never been pressure to return, or the sponsors or the ATP.
No one is concerned about the number
Their main concern is to recover the number one, now in possession of Federer, but "be well, be happy playing tennis and improve, and for that I must be okay for your knees."
The tennis player Rafa Nadal, who has been stopped two months and returned to training just a few weeks ago is said that, although "we have to see how it evolved when the force of truth knees to be in the following days, and hopefully that the trend is good. "
Nadal said how his physical problems started. "He had several months with pain. When I came back from Miami I started to hurt his right knee, was a different pain. I took off the bandages and the entire world thought he was perfect, but the problem is no longer hurt me down, hurt me the top of the kneecap. "
Nadal confesses that since then "everything started to get worse, they put the pain patch" until she said enough. "I decided it was best to stop and recover" because there comes a time when "you lose the illusion, you are not with the same energy, we will destroy."
Accepts that the tennis came to play for a long time with pain. "I've been playing almost every day with anti-infiltration and one day at Roland Garros," why it was "too breaking the two most important tournaments: Roland Garros and Wimbledon."
Nadal acknowledges he has learned to live with suffering. "Suffered too much at one time, I like experience, personally. I have learned to enjoy suffering. I think it is a virtue I have. When you train every day worse, when each game becomes a story that you do not know how to , a head full of doubts. "
"I did not know when to stop"
The Mallorcan has been stopped two months, acknowledging that two months have been very difficult. "At first, without much hope of doing, was mentally touched, felt that he had not done things as they should."
And Nadal acknowledged that he had stopped earlier and should not compete in the Madrid Masters. "It was a mistake of mine. The head of myself is me. The problem is mine for not knowing when to stop evaluating when to rest," "I wanted to play in Madrid last bull and I think it was a mistake."
In these two months of break, the manacorense has been focused on their recovery, working more than five hours a day with machines, although it has also had time to rest. "I have more hours on the couch in these two months than in the past four years," he joked.
He also discussed his rival and current number one Roger Federer, who confessed that he has not called in two months of break. "I do not think their goal is the number one" but "to win back a Grand Slam."
Regardless of the sport, Nadal spoke also reviewed other issues such as the economic situation, the crisis and recognized Madrid, spoke on recent signings of all white.
This is Rafa fan, Bee's summary of the interview
from this forum:
Original Forum from Rafa's website - Babalot supported now
For those of you who have not been able to see that TVE report this evening, I am posting some screen caps I made of it.
Rafa looked very well, very relaxed and we saw the smile that we have been missing for a while - the smile that came from the eyes, if you know what I mean.
He is still not committing himself 100% to playing in Montreal but hopes that he he will know in about 3 days.
He spoke about the problem with his knees, saying that the pain started in Miami and that he was playing with pain during all the other tournaments that followed. He mentioned about the fact that he was playing without the knee tapes, and explained that the problem was above the kneecap, not below and the tapes were not any help for this injury above the knee.
His family issues were discussed very briefly and very tactfully, with Rafa reminding us that he does not talk about his private life, but assuring that the problems that he was suffering during the last few months that affected him on court were his knees.
Although feeling very much better, he did say that he still doesn't feel perfect, hence the hesitance to make the decision at this moment about returning to the circuit in Montreal.
With regard to the No 1 ranking, hs said that losing the ranking to Roger was not his main priority. His main concern is to be well, to be fully fit in order to train hard and "although people don't always believe me" in order to improve, which he can only do when he is 100%.
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
In Nadal's case, less will amount to more
Rafael Nadal fans are undoubtedly nervous about the return of the muscle-bound Majorcan at next week's Masters event in Montreal. My advice? Don't expect too much.
There's still a chance Nadal won't play next week, according to his Web site. In an interview with Spanish television, translated and posted on rafaelnadal.com, Nadal says: "I would like to come back in Montreal in a week and a half. I have to force the knees and just see how far I can go." Nadal has downplayed expectations for his return since he decided to skip Wimbledon, and he continues to do so in this interview, saying that although he feels good, "the real test would be to see how I go when I really push my knees, and I think that is likely to happen in the upcoming days."
The good news about Nadal's injury is that it doesn't require surgery; tendinitis is common and treatable. The bad news is, it's likely to be a chronic problem -- and perhaps a bigger problem for Nadal than it would be for most other players. This isn't because of the way Nadal plays; it's because of who Nadal is. No one on tour trains with as much intensity, and no one needs -- or to be more accurate, believes he needs -- more hours on the court to be his best. When Nadal can't play and train with abandon, he suffers not just physically, but mentally. Here he is again, speaking about the effects of his injury: "You lose the drive to go back to train and compete, because you are not with the same energy. Little by little, it destroys you."
For years, people have said that Nadal couldn't last because he plays such a grueling game and punishes his body more than other players. I have my doubts about that, simply because those opinions are based on appearances. Yes, Nadal's style of play looks more demanding than Roger Federer's, but just because Federer seems to glide doesn't mean his knees and ankles aren't taking a pounding. We've also seen plenty of graceful players -- Miloslav Mecir comes to mind -- suffer career-shortening injuries. The 10-month season is brutal on the joints and tendons of every player, even the pretty ones.
My concern is, can Nadal still be Nadal while playing less tennis? The encouraging news from his interview is that Nadal admits he made some scheduling mistakes this year. He said he shouldn't have played in Madrid after feeling a lot of pain in Rome. If he hadn't, he might have been healthy for Roland Garros. To my mind, he shouldn't have played in Rotterdam after the Australian Open, or in Barcelona, either. Going forward, we can expect to see Nadal less often, and that's a good thing if it allows us to see a healthy Nadal more often.
What we'll begin to learn the rest of this season, though, is whether we'll see a fabulous Nadal as often, or ever again. I hope so, because for my money, no one -- not even Roger Federer -- has played better tennis than Nadal did from April to August of last year, when he won the French Open, Wimbledon and the Olympic gold medal. The man was otherworldly. Can Nadal be that same player with a slimmer schedule, more carefully designed practices and more breaks? Up to this point, Nadal has needed to play -- and do it a lot -- to be his best. Playing hard, and suffering, have become his identity: "It is a virtue that I've always had: I like to suffer, I have learned to enjoy suffering, and I believe that is what helps me."
He's now in the process of changing that identity. The trick is doing it without killing -- slowly, as he suggested -- the great player inside.
The entire interview - 20:03
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at this website's forum there is a thread just for the July 28, 2009 TVE interview
with an excellent English translation by Babi
Register there and you can read it. It states that it is exclusively translated for their website.
Go to the section Rafa News and Pics and look for the specific TVE interview thread.
Page 13 - First third of interview
Page 19 - Second third of interview
Page 22- Whole interview translation - with final third in blue
Original Forum from Rafa's website - Babolat supported now