Nice Q&A from the ATP website.
How does it feel to be back at the tournament where you won your first ATP World Tour title? Do you feel any extra pressure this week being the defending champion?
Of course. When you play the tournament where you won last year, you think about the points you have to defend. I try to avoid thinking about that as much as I can. I am happy to come back here because I feel very comfortable at this tournament. I have some friends here so I feel at home. That gives me security.
For those who havenít been to Morocco, why are you intrigued to play the tournament in Casablanca? What distinguishes it from other stops on the ATP World Tour?
To play the only ATP tournament in Africa is exciting. And the courts they have here are similar to the courts in Spain. We have things that Morocco gave us and they have things weíve shared with them. Itís a comfortable environment here.
Thus far in your career, clay has been your most successful surface. What do you enjoy most about playing on the red dirt?
I think itís a matter of education. Being Spanish, weíve always played on clay courts. We feel more comfortable on it because itís the way we started. We apply our games on the court, which makes us better on clay than on hard courts. I played futures and challengers on mostly clay, but now I try and mix it up more. Iíve tried to progress more on hard courts.
Youíre quite the linguist. Have you picked up any Arabic phrases during your time in Casablanca?
Not yet! I will try and come to Casablanca as much as I can to improve my Arabic.
If you could have the same level of talent as you do in tennis with the skill of your choice, what would you pick and why?
I would probably be a football player. A lot of tennis players have also played this when they were young. In my case, I played until I was 13 or 14 years old. I always try to watch the matches when I am home. The way the players move so many people just by scoring a goal is something that is so impressive. I would love to have that feeling.
Being a big Valencia CF fan, what do you think the club needs to do to get back to the top of La Liga and be a major threat in the other competitions like the Champions League?
I have to say Iím not only a Valencia fan, but also Levante. They are a smaller club in Valencia, but they are doing great. They are fifth. Itís very difficult. When they have to play Madrid and Barcelona, itís almost impossible. Valencia tries to be third, which is still very good.
The bad thing is we didnít go far in the Champions League. Thatís very important to us as it gives money and honour. In the situation now, they are struggling with money and itís difficult to go far with so many tough teams in the Champions League. I support them as much as I can and I hope they keep doing well.
Do you have any social media accounts? If not, do you have any future plans to join Facebook and/or Twitter?
I donít have any right now because I donít like them. I think sometimes, you give too much information and you can say things that can be misunderstood.
But I might start, because itís important for the fans and to be in touch with other people. Iím planning to have a Twitter account.
What is something about yourself that tennis fans would be surprised to find out?
I have no idea how to cook. And I like to sing in the shower.
Did you sing after your matches today?
Not today. I usually do it when I am really happy. They are mostly Spanish songs, but Iím starting to sing R&B.
I also always carry a book when I am at a tournament.
What are you reading right now?
Itís a book by a French author my girlfriend gave me. I donít remember the name but itís in Spanish.