vAmOs RaFa In MaDrId MaStErS!!!! [Archive] - MensTennisForums.com

vAmOs RaFa In MaDrId MaStErS!!!!

veyonce
10-12-2005, 04:33 AM
Credits to Yoly and nou.amic of VR.com

Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer to arrive in Madrid on Thursday

MADRID | EFE

The Spaniard Rafael Nadal and the Swiss Roger Federer have confirmed their arrival in Madrid this Thursday to prepare for the Masters Series Madrid in which they are the principal attraction.

With "eleven tournaments each" (sic) this season and both of them already qualified for the Masters Cup in Shanghai, Madrid will bring the big showdown between the two, a real duel.

Nadal has this week free as he has withdrawn from the Vienna tournament in which he was entered. A slight tendinitis in his knees, a result of the effort made in his three days of Davis Cup matches against Italy, has meant that he is following Doctor Angel Ruiz Cotorro's advice to rest for a further week to ensure he can compete well at the Madrid Arena.

In Vienna, where Feliciano Lopez is defending his title, the top seeds are the Argentinians David Nalbandian and Gaston Gaudio. Another player due to arrive soon in Madrid is Andy Roddick, who has asked for a practice court.

_________________________________________

Diario de Mallorca:

Federer says Rafa will be the next number 1

The Swiss Roger Federer confessed his wishes to play against Rafael Nadal in Madrid, and defended the theory that the mallorquin will be the next number 1.

Federer smiled when Nadal's 2005 season "bad luck" was mentioned, because even though Rafa has won 10 titles, including a Grand Slam, he can't overpass Federer, clear number 1 and winner of 11 titles this year. "Something similar happened to me in 2003, when I did a great season and I was number 2 behind Andy Roddick. I couldn't play better, but I ended number 2. But I have no doubts that Nadal will get to the number 1 and he will stay on the top for a long time" Federer said.

The number 1 of the ATP said that a match between him and Nadal in Madrid would be good to promote tennis, "I'm very happy to be able to play in Madrid and a match with Nadal would be very interesting for everyone, especially as it's played in Spain. It's like playing against Agassi in the US Open or against Hewitt in Australia," he said. Federer also admited that it wasn't going to be easy to get to play against Rafa because: "We are very far apart in the draws chart. He's the number 2 and I'm the number 1".
____________________________________________

From Diario AS:

Federer: " A final between me and Rafael Nadal would be fantastic"

Q: How do you feel these days just before arriving to Madrid, looking for this Masters Series that until now you haven't been able to win?

A: Madrid was a tournament I really missed in 2004. And in 2003 I lost in the semifinals to Ferrero in a fantastic match. I know that it would be fantastic and more interesting for everyone if Nadal and I played a match against each other, but it would have to be in the final, because the number 1 and the number 2 are very far apart in the play chart. It would be the match everyone is waiting for. Like playing against Agassi in the US or against Hewitt in Australia. I'd love it.

Q: What do you think of the season Rafael Nadal has made this 2005?

A: Ha ha.... It's incredible. To jump up to number 2, with consistency and with the number of victories he's had says it all. His season has been incredible, with 10 titles and one of them a Grand Slam. He hasn't arrived to the number 1, but that happened to me with Roddick in 2003 and I ended up number 2. I still rememver how Rafa won me in that semifinal in Roland Garros. It could be that in the last couple of months the calendar and long schedules he had are paying off a bit, but I have no doubt that Rafa will be among the best, on the top for a very long time. There are no reasons to thing otherwise.
____________________________
Tuesday, 11 October 2005 El Mundo-El Día Baleares
Rafael Nadal saving himself for Madrid

Nadal withdraws from Vienna to recover from problems with his knees - Federer says playing him will be all the more interesting" because it is in Spain".

MADRID.- The impending Masters Series Madrid is the next big attractive event on the world tennis calendar. There is no change in the Champions race or ATP rankings with the Swiss Roger Federer still at the top followed by the Mallorcan Rafael Nadal. Both players are reserving their strength for the tournament that begins on Monday in the Spanish capital.

Nadal has withdrawn from the tournament in Vienna for which he was entered and will spend some more time resting on Mallorca. The player wants to be fully recovered from a slight tendinitis in his knees. The effort expended over a long hard season added to the punishing Davis Cup tie against Italy has had its toll on the player from Manacor who has preferred to take a rest so that he can face the final part of the season in perfect condition. Nadal travels to Madrid on Thursday to finish there his preparation for the Masters.

Roger Federer also arrives in Madrid on Thursday, similarly with no tournament this week and all his attention focused on this tournament. When he spoke yesterday by video link with the Spanish capital, he said that he was looking forward to playing in the final against Nadal. "It will be even more interesting to everyone because it is being played in Spain," the Swiss player explained. "It's like playing Agassi in the US Open or Hewitt in Australia. We're far apart in the draw, though, he's seeded number two and I'm the number one. But I played Ferrero two years ago in the semifinals and it was fantastic. Now I've got to focus on this tournament."

About the rivalry between the two this year (Federer has won 11 titles to Nadal's 10) and the fact that Nadal, despite all that he has achieved, has not been able to reach him, Federer recalled that the same had happened to him in 2003 with Andy Roddick. "I couldn't have played any better then and yet I finished up number two. Rafael has had an incredible year, he has won ten titles, one Grand Slam. It's true that that would normally be enough to give you the number one spot. But I have no doubts that he is going to be at the top for a very long time."

ataptc
10-12-2005, 05:25 PM
Vamos Rafa! I hope his knee will be alright next week.. :)

adelaide
10-12-2005, 07:14 PM
Oh I am so looking forward to watching Rafael play again :D I've been bored the past 2 weeks. woot!

But according to a German news source, it seems that Roger has an injury so he's not coming to madrid. :sad: :sad: I hope it's not true.

Blanco y Negro
10-12-2005, 10:39 PM
It would be nice to see another Roger and Rafa match. Thanks for the great posts.

VAMOS

veyonce
10-13-2005, 01:57 AM
Looks like we won't get to see a repeat of Roger vs Nadal match... Roger Federer has already pulled out of tournaments in Madrid and Basel due to his right foot ligament injury while training for Madrid Masters. He may miss the Paris Masters too.

http://www.masters-series-madrid.com/eng/news/NewsDetail_247.htm
Federer injured pulls out

World number one Roger Federer has been forced to pull out next week's Masters Series Madrid after injuring himself during training on Wednesday.

Madrid, 12th October, 2005 - The Swiss suffers a strain in his right ankle ligament. He will be forced to take at least a two week break from competitive tennis and will also miss his local tournament in Basel.

Federer will visit the doctor a again and is considering coming to Madrid for a press conference.

“Federer has phoned today to tell me that he had had an injury while trying to hit a drive. He has a strong injury in his right ankle, so he won’t play in Madrid. He is walking on crutches”, has said Manolo Santana. “It’s a pity that Roger won’t be here because we really wanted to see him playing in the Madrid Arena, but injuries are something impossible to control. I know that Roger feels bad about this, because he was eagering to play in Madrid this year”.

Even though he might also be forced to miss the indoor tournament in Paris-Bercy, his doctors, however, said they were optimistic that he would be available to defend his title at the Shanghai Masters that begins on November 13.
_________________________________________

Credits to nou.amic of VR.com for translation.
Nadal to arrive in Madrid on Friday

The world number two one of the top attractions at Masters Series Madrid

Madrid, 12 October, 2005 – Rafael Nadal has announced that he will arrive in Madrid on Friday. The Roland Garros winner will arrive at Barajas airport at 13.30 on an Air Europe flight (Air Europe is one of the Masters Series Madrid sponsors).

Nadal is going to be without doubt one of the great attractions of the fourth edition of the Masters Series Madrid. He does not want to let down the numerous fans that will be supporting him from the stands and will begin training that very same day: His first practice session on the tournament's Green Set courts is planned for 5pm - 7pm on Friday.

Nadal comes to the Masters Series Madrid as number two in the world. He has not played since the Davis Cup match in Italy. Since then he has been saving his strength for the Madrid event, where he will attempt to win his eleventh title in 2005, which would be his fourth ATP Masters Series title, to add to those won in Monte Carlo, Rome and Montreal.

Björki
10-13-2005, 06:58 AM
Vamos Rafa :bounce:

MIRE
10-13-2005, 01:33 PM
sorry that Federer pulled out . vamos Rafael

alexito
10-13-2005, 05:01 PM
yessssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssss
federer no play madrid!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

casillas_girl
10-13-2005, 05:08 PM
I hate it that Rogi pulled out! :(

adelaide
10-13-2005, 06:39 PM
I hate it that Rogi pulled out! :(
me too :sobbing: :hug:

but vamos rafa anyway. :)

Cris
10-13-2005, 07:24 PM
Roger :sad: :hug:


iVamos Rafa! :bounce:

casillas_girl
10-14-2005, 03:18 PM
I'll look it on the bright sight, now Rafa has even more chance to win! :p

Saumon
10-15-2005, 10:32 PM
Rafa will play doubles with Feli, and Roddick will play too :eek: (with Blake)

adelaide
10-16-2005, 03:23 PM
1 NADAL, Rafael vs Bye
Q vs HANESCU, Victor
VOLANDRI, Filippo vs MOYA, Carlos
Bye vs 13 ROBREDO, Tommy

10 STEPANEK, Radek vs Bye
HENMAN, Tim vs DENT, Taylor
YOUZHNY, Mikhail vs ACASUSO, Jose
Bye vs 7 GAUDIO, Gaston

3 DAVYDENKO, Nikolay vs Bye
KIEFER, Nicolas vs BECK, Karol
LOPEZ, Feliciano vs GROSJEAN, Sebastien
Bye vs 16 GINEPRI, Robby

11 FERRER, David vs Bye
Q vs WC COSTA, Albert
FERRERO, Juan Carlos ESP vs MIRNYI, Max BLR
Bye vs 6 PUERTA, Mariano ARG

8 LJUBICIC, Ivan vs Bye
NOVAK, Jiri vs Q
BERDYCH, Tomas vs ROCHUS, Olivier
Bye vs 12 ANCIC, Mario

15 GONZALEZ, Fernando vs Bye
MATHIEU, Paul-Henri vs WC VERDASCO, Fernando
MONFILS, Gael vs Q
Bye vs 4 CORIA, Guillermo

5 NALBANDIAN, David vs Bye
MELZER, Jurgen vs SPADEA, Vincent
WC MASSU, Nicolas vs Q
Bye vs 9 JOHANSSON, Thomas

14 HRBATY, Dominik vs Bye
HAAS, Tommy vs PAVEL, Andrei
RUSEDSKI, Greg vs Q
Bye vs 2 RODDICK, Andy

:).

casillas_girl
10-16-2005, 05:43 PM
Rafa will play doubles with Feli, and Roddick will play too :eek: (with Blake)
Andy doubles with Blake??? :eek:
Have they ever done that before?

Jennay
10-16-2005, 06:03 PM
Buena suerte Rafito :bounce:

casillas_girl
10-16-2005, 06:17 PM
I'm saying my feeling says he's gonna win!!!! :D

MariaV
10-16-2005, 06:19 PM
Yes, go and win the tournament Rafa! VAMOS RAFAEL!!!!!!! :bigclap: :yippee: :bounce: :bigclap: :yippee: :bounce: :bigclap: :yippee: :bounce:

~*I Luv Rafa!!~*
10-17-2005, 07:58 AM
VAMOS RAFA !!!! Wohoo and if u want more go to the vr.com messageboard !!! :)

adelaide
10-18-2005, 02:30 AM
according to a news that mirkaland posted in the GM his knee is still bothering him & he pulled out of doubles because of that :sad:

I'm not sure if he should play the singles...............

~EMiLiTA~
10-18-2005, 07:10 AM
yeah...i'm seriously freaked out by that article cos until i read that i thought he had great chances to win...and i was also happy to see him playing doubles with feli...now it's all gone pear-shaped :(

i hope he's ok...but if he's in that much pain, i guess it would be foolish to continue playing...better to rest up for Shanghai...

que te mejores muy pronto Rafa :sad:

ataptc
10-18-2005, 08:12 AM
Poor Rafa.. I hope him playing singles won't aggrevate it further :sad:

MariaV
10-18-2005, 08:21 AM
Poor Rafa.. I hope him playing singles won't aggrevate it further :sad:
I hope that too. :sad:

nenadeSergio
10-18-2005, 02:12 PM
Seriously, it might be better if he doesn´t play in Madrid at all...I dunno but it can get worse if he plays. :sad: Toni says they´ll wait for the doctors´ decision.

veyonce
10-19-2005, 03:11 AM
credits to nou.amic of vamosrafael.com

Masters Series Madrid moves to Las Rozas

As in previous years, some of the players who are taking part in the Masters Series Madrid went along to watch Real Madrid's training session at the Ciudad del Fútbol. Confessed Madrid supporters all, they do not want to miss the match tomorrow night against Rosenborg, either.

On Tuesday morning Feliciano López, Juan Carlos Ferrero and Rafa Nadal went along to keep a date that has become a tradition since the first edition of the Masters Series Madrid was held in October 2002. Together with the Argentinian Guillermo Coria and the Frenchmen Michel Llodro and Fabrice Santoro, the Spanish tennis players were special spectators at "the whites" last training session before their match in the Champions league against Rosenborg.

Just as it is customary to see many of Real's first team players in the boxes at the Masters Series Madrid cheering on their compatriots, our three tennis players are all fervent Madrid fans who have on more than one occasion been seen enjoying the football at the Santiago Bernabéu.

Taking advantage of being in Madrid, they made time to go along to Las Rozas and encourage the Madrid players for their match on Wednesday. While the Madrid players were training, they were kicking a ball around on one of the artificial grass pitches.

Interchange of greetings and gifts

Raúl, Robinho, Zidane, Baptista, Pavón, Mejía and Vanderlei Luxemburgo were some of the "madridistas" who came over to greet them and thank our best known tennis players for their visit. They all wished each other luck - some for the Champions League match against the Norwegians and others for their respective tennis matches. Robinho gave Feliciano Lopez his sweatshirt and Babtista gave his to Rafa Nadal, gestures which the tennis players greatly appreciated.

Impromptu players

What better way to demonstrate you support Madrid than on the pitch? The tennis players accepted Raúl's invitation to step on to the Las Rozas pitch and try to shoot penalties past Casillas in goal. Ferrero, Coria, Feliciano and Nadal took it in turns to practise shooting from the spot. Feliciano Lopez and Juan Carlos Ferrero scored excellent goals showing that they are not just football fans but also good with the ball. Watching them while they showed off their skills were Helguera, Gravesen, Beckham, Roberto Carlos, Sergio Ramos and Diego López.

RAFA NADAL : "It's something that we do almost every year, I love football, this is my team and I'm pleased to be here. Besides, yesterday in El Larguero, Robinha and I made a promise to each other: He promised me that if he scored a goal he'd dedicate it to me and I promised him in return that I'd try to make it through to Friday in the Masters. I hope I can keep that promise, that I can get there. We'll need to wait and see if the doctors let me try."

"Tomorrow I'll be at the match against Rosenborg, I'm playing at 4 o'clock. If I play, I'll have time to get there and if I don't play, I'll go straight there.... I hope we win at home tomorrow against Rosenborg. We need that win."

(JCF and Feli then talk about how well Real Madrid is playing lately, what big fans they are and how they wouldn't miss tomorrow's match for anything.)

veyonce
10-19-2005, 03:17 AM
Seems that Rafa may or may not play for Madrid Masters.... His knee problems may be much more serious...

From Yahoo

Knee problems could force Nadal to join Madrid absentees

MADRID, Oct 18 (Reuters) - World number two Rafael Nadal could join the list of high-profile withdrawals from the Madrid Masters Series if the tendinitis in his knees does not improve before his opening match on Wednesday.

The 19-year-old top seed withdrew from the ATP event in Vienna last week. Although he said he was determined to play Madrid tournament the pain in his knees could cause him to drop out again.

"I've been training for a couple of days and the knee is still hurting," said Nadal. "I've had a scan done and it shows that I've got acute tendinitis."

veyonce
10-19-2005, 03:50 AM
telegraph.co.uk

Lame Nadal vows to play on
By Mark Hodgkinson in Madrid
(Filed: 18/10/2005)

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/graphics/2005/10/18/strafa18.jpg

Rafael Nadal is the face, or rather the pumped-up biceps, of this week's Madrid Masters, but the Spanish teenager and top seed disclosed last night that he had been experiencing considerable discomfort in another part of his body, with "severe" tendonitis in his left knee which may force him to withdraw injured.

The cement-court tournament is already missing Roger Federer, Switzerland's world No 1, who ruptured ankle ligaments during a training session last week. Also absent with injuries are Australian Lleyton Hewitt, American Andre Agassi and Russian Marat Safin, last year's champion.

The tournament directors, worried about the possibility of having a thin draw for the second successive year, will no doubt be requesting almost hourly news on Nadal's knee.

Nadal first damaged the knee on the practice court this month, an injury which forced him to withdraw from Vienna last week. The world No 2, who has a first-round bye here at the Casa del Campo and is scheduled to play his second-round match against Romanian Victor Hanecsu tomorrow, said that he had had to make do with light training sessions.

"I'm still a bit injured. I thought I was feeling better, but I started to really feel pain at the weekend. I had a scan and it is tendonitis, a severe one in my knee. But my will is to play no matter what happens. I'm going to reduce my training, which is not the best thing to keep my tennis level up and to keep fit, but it's the best thing for my knee," said Nadal, who is famed for his athletic and ferocious tennis, a style of play that is very demanding on the body.

Perhaps the French Open champion should not even be contemplating playing here, but he had been hoping to make use of Federer's absence. The pair of them have carved up the previous seven Masters Series tournaments this season, with Federer winning four and Nadal three. Here, Nadal could level things up.

It was somehow inevitable that much of the interest on the first day would centre on the catwalk models who have been hired as ball girls for the week, with the official website unashamedly referring to the return of the "long-legged lovelies", but it is unlikely that Greg Rusedski's opening round today will be a thing of beauty.

His match against Ivo Karlovic, a Croatian qualifier, is certainly more beast than beauty as both have huge service actions that promise to be especially effective in the Spanish capital, where the ball tends to fly through the thin air. Karlovic, the tallest man on tour at 6ft 10in, also achieves incredibly high bounce.

Should Rusedski beat him, he will meet Andy Roddick, the American second seed and another player with a fearsome service action. Roddick's first service has the same top speed as that of a high-performance sports car, 155mph, which is the world record for the fastest delivery.

_____________________________________

Protennis.com

Nadal's Status for Wednesday

Rafael Nadal's playing status will be determined after an MRI that is scheduled for 10:30 Wednesday morning. According to his coach and uncle Toni Nadal, as long as the Spanish Federation doctor assures them that the tendinitis won't get worse by playing he'll play. He said that Rafael would rather win in Madrid than play in Shanghai.

Nadal practiced today with black bands around both knees and with flashbulbs popping all around him. Toni Nadal said the practice was lower intensity than usual, just designed to see how Rafael's knees would hold up on these courts.

veyonce
10-19-2005, 04:24 AM
Excerpts from Feliciano, Carlos Moya and Ferrero's press conferences wherein they were asked about Rafa:

From Feliciano's on 17 October 2005:

Q. Maybe doubles is your last hope for this tournament, but you know Nadal is injured, so maybe doubles is not going to take place.

Feli: Yeah, I don't think we're going to play because he's injured and he needs to keep his strength for singles. Well, the doctors advised him not to play doubles. I understand he's in a very important point of his career, having the whole Masters ahead of him.

Q. You know Rafa. Do you think he's going to withdraw from the singles in the tournament?

Feli: I don't know, but I'm sure he's going to play singles. I don't think he has any problem. However, he has an inflammation in his knee. The fewer number of matches he plays, the better. But I think he's going to still play singles.

Q. Are you disappointed? If someone asks me advice and does not do what I want, I'd be disappointed.

Feli: You do like the subject (smiling). Rafa has already spoken. We all have spoken and given our opinion. Still he has decided to choose Emilio. We agree on the fact that he's able, Emilio is able to do this job. The only thing is that the president has not taken our advice. We do know that. We are a bit disappointed, but that's it. Most of the players, we wanted a captain, which is Costa. Well, still, the president has decided to choose Emilio for his reasons.

What you do need to know is we have nothing against Emilio. Even if it's not our first choice. The thing is that we know Albert better. But we do believe that Emilio is going to do a great job. The past is the past, the decision is made. We need to give him confidence and create a great atmosphere towards the Davis Cup next year. That's it.

_____________________________________-

From Ferrero on 18 October 2005:

Q. What do you think about the "Nadal Mania" here in Spain?

Ferrero: I think it's normal. This moment he's playing good. He played the whole year, I mean, he won 10 tournaments. It's normal that Spain is thinking in only Nadal. But anyway, you know, we are here. We are the same tennis players as before. We are not that far away.

__________________________

From Carlos Moya on 18 October 2005:

Q. You were No. 1 in the world. Juan Carlos has been, too. There's never been a "Nadal Mania" before like that. How can you explain that?

Moya: Because maybe none of us won 10 tournaments in the same year and none of us won three Masters Series and one Grand Slam when we were 19. That's why probably.

Q. Are you surprised?

Moya: About what's happening to him or about what he's won already?

Q. What's happening, the popularity.

Moya: No, I guess it's normal. He's doing something that not even Federer has done. What he's done so far only Borg or McEnroe or Connors or these guys did it before. I guess it's normal that everybody's talking about him like that.

Q. You're Nadal's friend. Has he spoken to you about his injury? What would you do, or advise him, if you were in a similar situation?

Moya: Well, we each have our own body. I'm not the person to advise Nadal about his injury and his knee. He's facing a difficult situation because it's the only tournament being played in Spain. He also needs to approach No. 1, too. He has a very compromising situation not as mine, but very compromising situation. Different levels.

Q. Nadal has already said he'll be at the football stadium tomorrow.

Moya: Well, I have been twice, and last time I went there it was not a good experience. I went when Mallorca won 0 2. Then with Barcelona, well, it was not a good experience. I have nothing against it. It's a pity because of the schedule. Let's see if my match if the time of my match can be changed.

nenadeSergio
10-19-2005, 01:37 PM
He will play at 4PM :worship:

alexito
10-19-2005, 01:48 PM
10 minute nadal play!!!!!!!!!!
vamos rafa
I will see in espn in live!!!!!!!!!!!

casillas_girl
10-19-2005, 05:38 PM
am i the only one who can't see his matches???:sad:

Saumon
10-19-2005, 06:44 PM
am i the only one who can't see his matches???:sad:
nope :sad: :hug:

lilfairyprincess
10-19-2005, 09:18 PM
am i the only one who can't see his matches???:sad:

i can't either :sad:

vamos rafa!! :bounce:

veyonce
10-20-2005, 02:35 AM
PRESS CONFERENCE OF RAFAEL NADAL

Wednesday, 19th of October, 2005

Q. Tell us about your feelings. How did you feel about your knee in the match?

Rafa: Well, my knee was fine. I had these things that helped me also. It didn't hurt at the beginning, just a little bit when I got my foot on the court. But I was fine.

What concerns my playing, I think it has been a good match. The match actually was not easy. Despite the beginning, when I was a bit nervous, a bit slow, after three weeks without playing, because I haven't been able to train these days because of my knee. Despite all this, as I'm saying, I'm happy because I think I've done well. It was an important match. My serve has been there. More or less fine, yes.

Q. Does this victory change your goals towards these tournaments?

Rafa: Well, no, it doesn't. Nothing changes. The tournament is a normal tournament. The only thing that could change would be an injury. This is a normal tournament. Tomorrow I'll be playing. It's a very difficult match, second round, which I need to win. They're both difficult opponents, Moya, Robredo. I'll try to stay the way I'm playing today without making errors, as I was doing at the beginning of the match.

I was more comfortable. I felt more comfortable afterwards.

Q. We've said these days you've been taking MRIs and all this. Are you ready right now to play the rest of the tournament properly or are you going to continue visiting doctors and taking care of your knee?

Rafa: Probably I'll just continue with my specific treatment to take care of my knee, not to force it. Before going on the court today, I did. But for the rest of it, I've done quite a good first round which has given me confidence. This is important, to start well.

Q. Are you surprised because of the reaction of your knee? Is it a good surprise?

Rafa: Well, yeah. I thought my knee was going to support me. It didn't hurt. So, yeah, I'm happy.

Q. You told us the other day that if your knee was 70%, you would play. What has been the percentage of your knee?

Rafa: Well, actually it didn't hurt. This is very positive. I do feel like playing. That's positive.

Q. You said you were going to visit the Bernabeu Stadium today. Are you still wanting to go or are you going to rest? Tomorrow, sorry.

Rafa: It's many hours ahead (laughter).

Q. What about all those dropshot Hanescu made? Was he trying you?

Rafa: I think that's his normal play. That's the way he plays usually. It's not easy to play on these type of surfaces, to come to the net. But I do think you can control the ball easier on other surfaces.

These results are quite normal. I was feeling gradually more comfortable as the match went on. However, there was a bad return on my part, the first backhand I returned. What was it? I was standing too far away.

Then the second one was better. I made this lob. That was a pity because 3 Love in the tiebreak, then I made a good return, I was able to win. It was tough. It was a tough situation. The tiebreak, I was down again, so...

Q. The doctor said yesterday that you're here because this is Masters Series Madrid. Why is it special to be here?

Rafa: Well, I've been playing well here. I surpassed my own ranking. It's been long since I last played here in Spain, so I was looking forward to playing here. I think the crowd is behaving real well, both on the court and on the training courts. I'm thankful.

Q. Your training today before the match, it was incredible to see all those people watching you like if you were an artist or actor, someone really important. How do you feel about that?

Rafa: Well, I try to keep those thoughts aside, although this support makes me want to improve, to play the tournament. It has influenced me to make the decision to play. They give me confidence like they did in the Davis Cup. Every time I'm here in Spain, I feel support. It gives me confidence to carry on.

Q. Coria said today that his dream for Shanghai is to be a semifinalist. Do you dream of Shanghai?

Rafa: No. I dream of tomorrow's match, which is very important. This tournament is very important for me. It means a lot to me. I don't want to think ahead. We'll see what happens.

Q. It's great that you're playing the tournament. How is the knee and could you feel it during the match?

Rafa: Yeah, today I very happy because I feel very good with my knee. I don't have any problem no all match. So that's good.

Q. How did you hurt it? Was it during training?

Rafa: No, is a (inaudible), is tendonitis. This year I play a lot of matches. It's for that reason I have this problem, no?

Q. Is it 100% now or is it still getting better?

Rafa: The tests say it's not a hundred percent for sure, no? But I feel good. I don't have pain. So that's important for me, no? When I go to the court, I will have confidence with my knees. So for now I am good.

Q. You went a break of service down in the first set.

Rafa: Always I begin with break up. Today is the position changed.

Q. Because this is a Spanish tournament, was that part of your reason for playing?

Rafa: It’s important for me to play here. Last time I play here with my public and my public was in Cordoba, in Barcelona. Is important play at home now. Is very important tournament, the most important tournament in Spain. I want to play because the last two years I play very bad here.

Q. You're committed to playing Basel next week. Are you still intending to fulfill that commitment in Basel?

Rafa: I don't know yet, no. I will see after this tournament. I want to play, of course, but doesn’t depend on me, depends of my knees and the doctors say me what's the best for my knees, no?

Iza
10-20-2005, 01:58 PM
Vamos Rafa :woohoo: !!!!

~EMiLiTA~
10-20-2005, 02:19 PM
thanks for the transcript!!

pppllleeeaassseeee win today Rafa...pleeeaassee!!! VAMOS!!! :bounce:

alexito
10-20-2005, 05:26 PM
I like robredo but I want see nadal win always

casillas_girl
10-20-2005, 05:35 PM
me too, Nadal deserves it!!! :)

knight_ley
10-20-2005, 07:53 PM
:bounce:

Sambuca
10-20-2005, 10:03 PM
what about match against Robredo??? How is his condition? Tomorrow stepanek will be dangerous?

adelaide
10-20-2005, 10:43 PM
Rafael won 6-2 6-4 :)

veyonce
10-21-2005, 03:35 AM
PRESS CONFERENCE OF RAFA NADAL

Thursday, 20th of October, 2005

Q. You played a great match. Tommy tried everything. We saw you a bit hurt maybe with the knee, a bit injured.

Rafa: No, not at all. I'm perfect. I'm feeling well. The only thing is that I'm not comfortable right now in this chair.

Q. So you feel strong enough to continue here?

Rafa: Yeah, of course. I wish to get to the final now. I've won today's match. I played much better than yesterday. I'm glad.

Q. This year has been a success for you, but you don't want it to become a pressure.

Rafa: Yeah, this has been an incredible year. I didn't expect it to be this way when I started the year. But if things are this way, now I have this final period. I'm enthusiastic. I'm looking forward to resting then, and leaving Vienna's injury behind.

Q. I don't know if it's our fault that we are pessimistic, then euphoric, but do you see yourself in the final?

Rafa: I see myself in tomorrow's match against Stepanek, quarterfinals. That's all I see. He has been playing great. On this court, he's going to be a very, very difficult opponent. All the finals I've reached this year have been this way, thinking just about the next match.

Q. Will this bring you memories of the Davis Cup or is this a different story, completely different story?

Rafa: That was my debut in the Davis Cup. I remember I won an important match in my career in the Czech Republic, at 2-2 to go to 3-2, I remember. That was an important match in my career obviously. I have a good memory of that.

This year I've played twice on clay, and those have been tough matches. I won 7-5, 6-2 or 6-3 the first one, and Rome I lost the first set 6-4. I remember I lost two serves in a row, and then I won the following set 6-1, 6-3. He's a tough opponent. Let's see what happens.

Q. You've had time to improve your serve as well as winning 10 tournaments. How do you do this? Do you train?

Rafa: Actually, we have very little time to train this year. But I think you improve match by match. I'm very happy with my serve right now. That's been very important for me to climb in the ranking. I'm aware that I need to improve my serve still, to get higher in the ranking, and be more confident with it.

Q. You said your knee is fine, it doesn't hurt. Tell us about it. Do you feel fine, comfortable?

Rafa: I feel nothing right now. My knee is okay. This morning it did hurt a little bit when I woke up, but then when I started warming up and training, I've done well. I hope to keep this way. While it doesn't hurt, I'll keep on playing and hope to win.

Q. The score against Robredo reflects what the match was or was it more difficult?

Rafa: I think I've been superior in my play, played better than him. I don't know if 6-2 is a bit excessive, but I've been consistent without making errors. A victory is what I deserved, I guess.

Second set, I was calm, playing well until 3-2, 15 Love. I made the dropshot. 30-15, I made a double fault. Then I thought 3-3. That was tough. Then I played a good point, which was decisive for the match, 4-3. 4-4, then things came quite clean. Finally the set. The last game I started with a double fault. The ball almost didn't get to the net. Then I became confident at 15-All.

Q. From the tennis players we have in the draw right now, who is the best?

Rafa: Well, the one that worries me is Stepanek. The rest I don't care about them right now. I'm worrying about tomorrow. When you win one match, then you can start worrying about the following match.

Q. What do you think about models? What's your opinion?

Rafa: This question is becoming a boom. Like Formula One, we have a thousand models suddenly before the cameras. I find nothing strange in this. It's a kind of promotion, publicity for the tournament. That's positive. Nothing against it. I have more things in favor actually.

Q. You said you're focusing on the next match which could be Stepanek. Have you been watching David's matches? Do you see him strong enough?

Rafa: Well, I'm not surprised at his performance. He's had an incredible year. He's been fighting to get into the Masters. If he wins one match more, he has chances to get into the Masters. Let's hope he does get in.

He's a great person as well as a great tennis player. We get along with each other very well. I'd like to have him with me.

Q. What do you think about the Spanish crowd that loves you actually and supported you more than Tommy?

Rafa: Well, I don't know if they supported me more than Tommy, but the crowd is behaving incredibly in this tournament. On a personal level, I'm feeling very comfortable. I haven't played in Spain since the Godo tournament. Madrid has always been kind to me, as I have said. The crowd has really supported me and is helping me.

Q. We think if we hadn't been talking about you, we would have been talking about Ferrer here in Spain, newspapers and headlines.

Rafa: Yeah, maybe this year I've been constantly in newspapers because of the season, because of the year I've had. But David has also had an incredible year, playing at a very high level. Miami, Monte Carlo, quarterfinals, semis at Rome, Roland Garros quarterfinals, too. He's proving to be at a very high level. He's also a very experienced player that could be in the top 10. Let's hope he wins Paris. I agree with you that we could hear about him a lot more than we do.

Q. Your movement seemed to be much more free and relaxed today. Were you happy with the way you were moving today? It was better than yesterday?

Rafa: Yeah, yeah, I think I improve my mobility. That's important in my game, no? In my game, is very important my physical, so I improve today. I think play against Tommy is better for me because I know a lot his game. We play together a lot of times. That's more easy for me playing him than Hanescu, because he serve very well, he play very fast. Tommy, he's playing well, but I have a better feeling against him.

Q. You can see what he's doing? You can anticipate what Tommy is doing, because you've seen him play before? You can see where he is going to hit the ball?

Rafa: Every match is different, of course. Every match is difficult. But today I played a very good match. I am happy for that, no?

Q. When you woke up this morning, how did the knee feel?

Rafa: When I wake up today morning, I feel a little bit pain, but just a little bit. Nothing important. That's because I play two matches. In two matches, I don't feel nothing, only good feelings.

Q. Did you know that David Beckham got stuck in the traffic and was unable to see your match because he came here late?

Rafa: But after the match I am speaking with him in the locker room. So that's nice for me, no?

Q. What did you say?

Rafa: I ask personal things. Nothing special.

Q. Were you sorry that he missed your match?

Rafa: No, of course. It's okay for me. I am very happy for speak with him after the match. Yesterday I speak with him, too, after the Real Madrid match in the locker room of Real Madrid. It's very nice. I am happy for knowing him.

Castafiore
10-21-2005, 06:36 AM
Thanks, Veyonce :)

veyonce
10-21-2005, 08:16 AM
You are welcome, Castafiore!! :)

Excerpts From Independent Article

Nadal proves too nifty for Beckham

By John Roberts in Madrid
Published: 21 October 2005

Not only was Rafael Nadal too swift for Tommy Robredo, his Spanish compatriot, at the Madrid Masters last night, he was too quick for David Beckham as well.

The England football captain was stuck in traffic and missed the 19-year-old Nadal's masterclass en route to the quarter-finals.

This was a pity, because after Nadal had completed his opening match against Victor Hanesco on Wednesday night he dashed to the Bernabeu to see Beckham play with brio in Real Madrid's 4-1 Champions' League victory against Rosenborg.

Although his uncle, Miguel Angel Nadal, played for Barcelona, Rafa is a Real nut and has the run of the galacticos' training ground. He paid a visit on Tuesday and performed a nifty piece of keepy-uppy in spite of concerns about tendinitis in his left knee.

Nadal again wore tape below both knees as a precaution last night, though there were moments when Robredo may have wished his opponent's legs had been tied together.

Nadal won, 6-2, 6-4, after 78 minutes, losing his serve once, at 3-2 in the second set. None the less, most of the points were keenly contested in lengthy, deep-driving rallies. Before Robredo ventured to serve-and-volley for a spell midway through the second set, they played as if duelling on slow clay, as they did in their previous match in Bastaad, Sweden earlier this year. Nadal won that encounter 6-3, 6-3.

Having held interest in the tournament together after the withdrawals through injury of Roger Federer, Lleyton Hewitt, Marat Safin and Andre Agassi, Nadal, the top seed, now plays Radek Stepanek, of the Czech Republic, for a place in the semi-finals.

Stepanek, who eliminated Tim Henman in three sets in the second round * the Czech's second win against the British No 1 within a week * defeated Jose Acasuso, of Argentina, 7-6, 4-6, 7-6, to advance to the quarter-finals.

© 2005 Independent News & Media (UK) Ltd.

veyonce
10-21-2005, 08:52 AM
I'm going to stay up tonite to catch his match against Stepanek.. Was too tired to stay up for his match against Tommy...

casillas_girl
10-21-2005, 03:59 PM
POOR Becks!!! Rafa would have appriciated when he came!!!

RogiFan88
10-21-2005, 04:24 PM
An easy, predictable win over Robredo. Now for Stepanek.

alexito
10-21-2005, 09:01 PM
rafaaaaaaaa you are the bestttttttttttttttttt

adelaide
10-21-2005, 09:23 PM
He beat Stepanek 7-6(9) 6-4. The tiebreak was strange....... :scratch:

Up next is Ginepri.

Sambuca
10-21-2005, 09:52 PM
what do you think about this game?

adelaide
10-21-2005, 10:58 PM
Post-match Press Conference

Q. What a match against Stepanek. Proud?
Of course, I'm proud. It was a very, very tough match. I knew before I started that Stepanek is a very uncomfortable opponent that gives you no rhythm. I knew I had to resist and be consistent. It was an incredible match, a very high level, as we like to play, with fast rhythm.
I knew it was going to be difficult, but I fought as much as I could until 6-2, when it got complicated. But I'm very happy because now I reached the semifinals of another Masters Series at home.

Q. Ginepri, do you have references of him?
Well, the references are clear. Champion at New Haven, semifinals in Cincinnati and US Open. Very, very tough match. I'll need to play well.

Q. You started the tournament as a doubt, and now you're the only Spaniard. How do you feel? What are your hopes?
I'm looking forward to tomorrow's match. I'm very happy. The two first years I played here, I didn't do very well. I'm excited at the idea of playing a good tournament. This is a great indoor tournament. I wish I could reach the final. That would be great.

Q. During the tiebreak, what percentage of the victory belongs to the crowd? As a spectator I felt the crowd was great.
Yeah, I've been saying this all week. Once I decided to play, I knew I owed the crowd a lot. Every time I got on the court, I felt warmly welcomed. Thanks to their empathy in these very tough matches, where slight details are important.

Q. Differences between yesterday?
Today the crowd was incredible.

Q. The first question is about your knees. The second question, those black elastic bands, what are they? Are they miraculous?
Yes, of course, they come from Lourdes and are touched by Lourdes water. Seriously, it's to prevent the impact. It's not miraculous, but it soothes the pain.

Q. At 6 2, you suddenly lost four set points. You had two points against you. What did you think?
Well, I felt suddenly I was losing the match, when I was one point from winning the match. On his serve, 7-6, I was able to return. He won the following point. Then made a forehand on the line. I was brave. That was the victory of the tiebreak. However, I was a bit unfocused at 6-2.

Q. Stepanek was tough. Four matches, four victories. It seems like you know him.
Well, every match is different. All of them have been very tough. I've been feeling uncomfortable. This player makes a strange movement in his serve at the end which I cannot control. The truth is, this year I played twice on clay against him. 7-5, 6-3. I told you the other day about that match. Rome, I lost the first set 7-5, then I won 6-1, 6-2, or something like this.
Taking into account his performance on clay and how tough matches are what were the results 7-6 7-6 6-3, all those matches have been really difficult.

Q. Could you explain to us what difficulties you found?
It was a difficult match. Very tense moments. First set we were playing to the limit. I was able to recover in the tiebreak. 5-0, then suddenly it was 6-3, very difficult. Finally I was able to recover.

Q. How important was it not to go to three sets?
The first set I have two set points down, but I can win these points. So I am very happy because if I lost the first set, the match will be a little bit more tough, no?

Q. Can you talk us through the tiebreaker. You were 5-2 up, then two set points down. Can you describe that?
Yes. I was playing unbelievable the tiebreak, 5-0 in the tiebreak. 6-2, serve. 6-3, 6-5, and one point more with the serve. I can't win any point. I relaxed a little bit. In the 6-2, he played a good point. After that, he has two set points. That's difficult. But the public is very exciting in this moments, and very important for me, no?

Q. He's an unusual player. He sometimes plays up, sometimes back. He mixes it up. Does this make it difficult?
Yes, he's very difficult because he play very aggressive, goes to the net.

Q. For the tape?
He plays in the baseline. He plays very tough, too. It's very difficult. I never have good feelings around him.

Q. Do you think your standard has gone up in the three matches here?
Yesterday I play very well I think, too. Today I play good because is difficult opponent. But I am happy with my level every match, no?

Iza
10-22-2005, 09:58 AM
Vamos Rafaaaa :woohoo: !!!!

alexito
10-22-2005, 01:28 PM
yes rafaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa
you are the besttttttttttttttttttttt
rafa def ginepri 75 76

eddie_hyden
10-22-2005, 03:33 PM
great that rafa against ginepri but i missed the match ;( ..and doesn't seem that they have repeat telecast for that..

so the final gonna be tomorrow, right? monday morning 2pm spore time? i'm gonna catch this even if i have to go to work with panda eyes the next day ;)

..and rafa better win this for me hahaha...

cheers all!!

Rafa = Fed Killa
10-22-2005, 04:27 PM
One more to go RAFA.

french-guru
10-22-2005, 04:37 PM
do you think that Rafa will go against Nalbandian of Ljubicic?

Jennay
10-22-2005, 05:15 PM
Rafa :yeah: Great tournament - also nice to know his knees are holding up. :)

casillas_girl
10-22-2005, 06:04 PM
do you think that Rafa will go against Nalbandian of Ljubicic?
OF COURSE!!! Ljubicic is a great player, but we musst admit, our Rafa is way better! ;)

french-guru
10-22-2005, 09:24 PM
what is this about Rafa withdrew from the tournament?!!!??? :confused: :eek: what happened i am confused!!!! :sad: but why!!???

adelaide
10-23-2005, 12:32 AM
what is this about Rafa withdrew from the tournament?!!!??? :confused: :eek: what happened i am confused!!!! :sad: but why!!???
Ummmm... I think it's a silly rumour. Do not fear. :)

ataptc
10-23-2005, 01:32 AM
Vamos Rafa! This will be his 4th AMS title if he wins :D Glad that his knees aren't giving him much problems!

chicky841
10-23-2005, 02:34 AM
Hope he wins it. I was really glad he beat Ginepri

RogiFan88
10-23-2005, 02:37 AM
Very impressive, Rafa. You will win your first indoor h/c title tomorrow! ;)

veyonce
10-23-2005, 05:11 AM
great that rafa against ginepri but i missed the match ;( ..and doesn't seem that they have repeat telecast for that..

so the final gonna be tomorrow, right? monday morning 2pm spore time? i'm gonna catch this even if i have to go to work with panda eyes the next day ;)

..and rafa better win this for me hahaha...

cheers all!!

Hi eddie_hyden,

Star Sports is going to show the final only on Monday 11am to 1pm, then repeat at 12am to 2am.. :mad:

veyonce
10-23-2005, 05:33 AM
It's great to see Rafa has a personal friendship with Roger.. Guess the male tennis players are not so competitive off court.. Cos heard the female tennis players do not train with the competitors unlike the mens'...

_____________________________________________

Post Semi-Final Match Press Conference
Madrid, 22nd of October, 2005.

Nadal: “For me it’s something special to be in this Masters Series final”

“I was feeling a bit tired”, said the first seed after his victory against Ginepri. “But I’m not worried”.

“Ljubicic is playing unbelievable. He's a very good player”


Q. How do you feel?

Rafa: Fine. I'm feeling well. The beginning of the match, I was feeling a bit tired. Now that it has ended, my knee is hurting a bit. I hope it's nothing.

Q. I wasn't here yesterday in the press conference, but I'm surprised you mentioned your knee is hurting. Are you worried?

Rafa: I'm not worried. I've only got one match left.

Q. First day you said your knee was 70%. What do you think about tomorrow?

Rafa: We'll see tomorrow. I cannot evaluate it now. I feel fine, although it hurts a little bit. Especially when it ended, with the stretching and at all, it wasn't warming enough. Let's hope for tomorrow I'm fine. It stopped hurting afterwards.

Q. Was it possibly the moment where your opponent was forcing you a bit?

Rafa: No, that was not the problem. I played well.

Q. You hadn't played against Ginepri before. How did you feel he was playing? Pretty irregular, maybe?

Rafa: I saw it fine. First of all, I was comfortable, but then he was starting to play better. I was attacking. I was losing the court. I was playing close to the net. That made things difficult. Things became tough. I fought back. When I saw the chance, I didn't take it the first time, but the second I did.

Q. What does it mean for you to be here in the final in Madrid?

Rafa: For me it's something special, to be in a Masters Series final, indoors especially especially if it's Madrid, which was one of my goals for this year, Madrid and Shanghai. For the moment, I'm here. This is the final. I said it yesterday. No matter what could happen today, this was a good tournament. Now it's better.

I hope I can win. That would be my 11th title, my fourth Masters Series this year. That would be great, incredible for me. It is already incredible right now (smiling).

Q. Talking about this incredible year, you're adding more victories than Federer. If Federer is an alien, what are you?

Rafa: Well, maybe an exception. But Shanghai, I talked to him the other day, to Federer, he told me he was going to visit Shanghai. I hope him to be. It's better for us if he's there. 78 victories, but a few defeats, too.

Q. You were saying you spoke to Federer the other day. Was that on the telephone?

Rafa: Yeah, I spoke to him on the phone. I asked him how he was feeling with his ankle, he had a problem. He was wearing crutches still, but he hopes to be in Shanghai. He wishes to be there.

Q. Do you speak to him often or is that unusual?

Rafa: No, not often. Sometime as few times to congratulate him, for Wimbledon, for instance, the US Open, and right now I spoke to him during this Masters Series.

Q. This is interesting. It shows that although you're big rivals, you can have respect and consideration for each other?

Rafa: Yeah, besides, we have a good relationship. Federer, he's not only No. 1 and a great person; he's a man that's calm and quiet, good person. He's nice. That's the most important thing.

Q. What do you expect, Nalbandian, Ljubicic?

Rafa: I don't know. They're starting the third set.

Q. Which one do you prefer?

Rafa: The one that plays worse tomorrow, that's the one I prefer.

Q. Can you describe the match? You got one break ahead, and he broke back. That happened twice. Then you were more consistent in the tiebreak.

Rafa: Yes, today is a difficult match. I feel a little tired in the beginning. Ginepri is playing with a lot of confidence for the last results, he has very good results in the last months. So in the two sets, I have break in the 3-3, 4-3, and he return me the break in the next game, so...

He plays very aggressive. Is not easy for me play against him. But I am very happy because I win. Very, very important match, against a very good player, no?

Q. You made very few unforced errors, maybe only eight or nine in the whole match. Are you pleased with that?

Rafa: Yes, that's very important. I think that's the deciding factor for the victory.

Q. How do you make so few errors? How are you so consistent? Because you're so fast or because you use topspin?

Rafa: I don't know. I think I play with topspin. That's more easy for them to have a lot of mistakes. I feel good physical, no? If I am in a good performance, so I feel fast on court every time in the year. A lot of times I feel like this, so that's very important in my game, the physical, no?

Q. When you wake up in the morning, are the knees okay?

Rafa: Yeah, it's okay. Now I feel a little bit pain, a little bit tired, but I think for tomorrow will be okay.

Q. Can you say something about if it's Nalbandian or Ljubicic?

Rafa: Ljubicic is playing unbelievable. He won the last two tournaments, so he have a lot of confidence. He's very good player.

And Nalbandian, he's one of the player with mortality in the tour, no? If he's playing well, he's very difficult playing him. But I hope tomorrow play very, very good match for try the victory.

veyonce
10-23-2005, 05:44 AM
I hope rafa's knees are ok...

Credits to Yoly and nou.amic of VR.com

__________________________________________

Diario de Mallorca

"The band on my knee isn't a cure but it reduces the pain"

Yesterday Nadal revealed his "secret" for keeping on going : holy water from Lourdes. He made the joke when a journalist asked him if the black bands beneath his knees were "miraculous" as despite the tendinitis in his left knee he is playing as if he had no physical problems. "They're from Lourdes, sprinkled with water.." he said with a wide grin making the whole press room burst out laughing. "No, its a band that is put below the rotular tendon, it helps to keep the kneecap up. It doesn't cure anything but it reduces the pain," he said now speaking seriously, his knees heavily bandaged to hold bags of ice in place.

__________________________________________

Plasma/LCD tv's, video consoles and table football in the VIP lounge.

Only the players, their coaches and organizers have access here.

RELAX. The exclusive VIP lounge is very much liked by players and their companions.

22.10.2005
PATRICIA CAZÓN (MADRID)

In the Master Series of Madrid there is an exclusive zone for the players, coaches, organizers and the ATP. To have access there, you have to have a picture of a couch on your pass. It's the place where the players relax and forget about the pressures of the tournament. It's located in the lower part of the Madrid Arena, it has big plasma screens, two last generation nintento consoles, a few couches round here and there, a pool table, table football and lots of laptop computers.

"As the lounge has WIFI, all the players bring in their own computers" the organizers say. Feliciano Lopez is running towards the door with the racquets hanging on his back, while Rafael Nadal's uncle Toni reads the press and papers peacefully."

Activities
"The funniest thing happened at the beginning of the tournament. We had to buy a player everything, from shoes to racquets because his luggage got lost", Kathrin Baker, responsible for the players zone, explains. Her office is a little room where all players have to go through before getting in. "The argentinians come to ask us what extra activities we have. They like to dance a lot". She said. 15 people work with Kathrin and have been preparing this lounge for 2 months checking that everything is ok and that the players have everything they need and want.

Hairdresser's and DVD movies free
"Nadal has no special requests. When he goes to train, he comes, asks for two tins of tennis balls and towels" Kathrin talks about the star, the one everyone wants to know more and more about. "He's a darling, very polite and he doesn't have any demands, he doesn't ask for any kind of special request."

What she does say is that the tennis players go to the hairdresser's during the tournament. "Specially the argentinians," She said.

And there is aboslutely everything in the players' zone. Even a DVD room where tennis players can borrow, without paying, so they can see them at night.

veyonce
10-23-2005, 05:49 AM
Excerpts From Ljubicic's Press Conference:-

Ljubicic: “I'm definitely going to enjoy. It's my first Masters Series final”

The Croatian faces Nadal in his first Masters Series final. “What I remember is that for me was very, very difficult to manage his huge top spins”.

Q. You and Nadal are 1-1.

Ljubicic: Yes, this year we play two times.

Q. What do you expect coming to the final of tomorrow?

Ljubicic: I expect a lot of balls back, a very long match (smiling). A lot of people against me. Normal, no? Davis Cup atmosphere. No, but I'm extremely happy that I beat all my opponents who are fighting for the Masters Cup. Nadal is way in front of us. I'm not worrying if I'm going to win tomorrow or not. But definitely I'm going to give my best. Lately my best was enough for everyone. I hope it's going to be enough tomorrow, as well.

Q. In your opinion, Nadal is head and shoulders above the rest of the Spaniards? What's the thing that makes Nadal so big, so strong, putting him apart of the rest?

Ljubicic: I think physically. I think physically he's very strong. I think he has huge advantage being lefty. I think if he wasn't lefty, he wouldn't be this good as he is right now. He would be great player, but not as good as he is now.

I have fantastic record against Spanish guys this year. I lost only to Nadal. I beat nine others, Nadal including. So I'm not definitely afraid of running around the court and try to hit the winners. Especially best of five, you have plenty of time to get in the rhythm, to get a feeling of the ball and try to hit winners. That's what I'm going to try to do tomorrow.

Q. Do you enjoy that challenge of playing the crowd and the opponent? Is it very difficult?

Ljubicic: Well, I think it's going to be nice, especially because, again, I have nothing to lose. Nadal is qualified already for the Masters Cup. There is no one else to beat to keep the guys away from that spot. I'm going to play my match tomorrow. I'm going to try to serve well, try to be aggressive. It's best of five. It's going to be a lot of tennis. We'll see.

I'm definitely going to enjoy. It's my first Masters Series final. I'm not going to stay there and be so tense because of it because I played a lot of tennis lately.

Q. What do you remember about the match with Nadal?

Ljubicic: We played in Doha. I won in three sets. Then he won in Miami, even if I was a break up in the third.

What I remember for me was very, very difficult to manage his huge top spins. But, you know, is different you play outdoor and indoor. Outdoor you have even the wind, you have a sun. You have things that are basically bothering you, making it difficult to hit winners from baseline. And indoors it's much easier.

I'm actually very positive that I'm going to do the good match tomorrow. I mean, doesn't mean that I'm going to win, because after Roger, I have to say he's unlucky that he's with the generation of Roger. Otherwise he would be very good No. 1. But he's one of the best players in the world. I mean, all Masters Series is just Roger and Nadal. I'm going to try to stop that. But it's definitely not going to be easy, that's for sure.

Q. I don't know if you've realized that tomorrow the best player until this year is playing against the player with more victories in a year. Ljubicic is the best indoor player against the best player that has more victories this year?

Ljubicic: I think it's going to be a great match. That's all what I can say. Nadal won a lot of matches this year, that's for sure. But I have great record indoors, as well. I don't feel the best player indoors. Because I think if Roger played all these tournaments, it would be much, much different. But definitely I won a lot of matches. What can I say? It's going to be great, great match, I think. It's always nice to see match up between two different styles. I think we have totally different style. It's going to be very interesting for the crowd.

Q. Are you aware of the court in Bratislava? That covered court, it's quite special.

Ljubicic: I think they're going to change the surface. I think, because it was too fast for Spain, was too fast for Argentina, but would be suicide for them if they put the same court. I think it would be great for us.

I think they going to try. They going to try to put slow. But how slow can it be indoors? That's also questionable. It's going to be great match, another great match. We are almost in the end of the season, but a lot of good matches are still in front of me.

eddie_hyden
10-23-2005, 07:43 AM
Hi eddie_hyden,

Star Sports is going to show the final only on Monday 11am to 1pm, then repeat at 12am to 2am.. :mad:

Thanks, it does look like it. Last night I checked it's gonna be tonight 2am, but now it's not :mad:

Well i'm gonna have to refrain myself from any news till i watch that replay on monday night :(


Excerpts From Ljubicic's Press Conference:-
[b]

Q. What do you remember about the match with Nadal?

Ljubicic: We played in Doha. I won in three sets. Then he won in Miami, even if I was a break up in the third.

What I remember for me was very, very difficult to manage his huge top spins. But, you know, is different you play outdoor and indoor. Outdoor you have even the wind, you have a sun. You have things that are basically bothering you, making it difficult to hit winners from baseline. And indoors it's much easier.

I'm actually very positive that I'm going to do the good match tomorrow. I mean, doesn't mean that I'm going to win, because after Roger, I have to say he's unlucky that he's with the generation of Roger. Otherwise he would be very good No. 1. But he's one of the best players in the world. I mean, all Masters Series is just Roger and Nadal. I'm going to try to stop that. But it's definitely not going to be easy, that's for sure.

Q. I don't know if you've realized that tomorrow the best player until this year is playing against the player with more victories in a year. Ljubicic is the best indoor player against the best player that has more victories this year?

Ljubicic: I think it's going to be a great match. That's all what I can say. Nadal won a lot of matches this year, that's for sure. But I have great record indoors, as well. I don't feel the best player indoors. Because I think if Roger played all these tournaments, it would be much, much different. But definitely I won a lot of matches. What can I say? It's going to be great, great match, I think. It's always nice to see match up between two different styles. I think we have totally different style. It's going to be very interesting for the crowd.

Q. Are you aware of the court in Bratislava? That covered court, it's quite special.

Ljubicic: I think they're going to change the surface. I think, because it was too fast for Spain, was too fast for Argentina, but would be suicide for them if they put the same court. I think it would be great for us.

I think they going to try. They going to try to put slow. But how slow can it be indoors? That's also questionable. It's going to be great match, another great match. We are almost in the end of the season, but a lot of good matches are still in front of me.

hmm, somehow i don't really adore this guy :devil:

Ti-Anne
10-23-2005, 12:14 PM
:bounce: VAMOOOOOOOOOOOOS RAFAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA !!!! :bounce:

Please win Madrid, skip Basel and come to Bercy, I'm waiting for you !!!!!

alexito
10-23-2005, 01:42 PM
now madrid
nadal have hard match. I hope nadal win.

Ti-Anne
10-23-2005, 02:11 PM
3-3 oooooh vamos Rafa !!

Ti-Anne
10-23-2005, 02:12 PM
alexito, can you see the final ???

Ti-Anne
10-23-2005, 02:20 PM
5-3 ljubicic oh no !!!! :awww:

Ti-Anne
10-23-2005, 02:22 PM
Rafa lost 1st set 6-3 :bigcry:

ensaimada
10-23-2005, 02:25 PM
Ahm.. what the hell happened?
Is he not.. warmed up yet or what? Can anyone who has a smart cable network and CAN see the final :mad: tell me?

Ti-Anne
10-23-2005, 02:29 PM
I have no idea of what's going on there...Just freakin' out with the scoreboard :eek:

ensaimada
10-23-2005, 02:36 PM
That's it! I'm getting my cable upgraded :D As from next month I wanna see even the $10,000 tournaments! I can't stand this anymore!
The kid shouldn't lose this match! Not to Ljubicic... it would mean his mentality isn't working.. let alone his serve :rolleyes:

Ti-Anne
10-23-2005, 02:47 PM
3-2 ljubi, he broke Rafa !!! ooooooh what's wrong with lil' angel ? :sobbing:

federated
10-23-2005, 02:47 PM
c'mon, ljubicic is a great player and is on a super hot streak. Give him some credit, it's a tough match, and rafa's knee is a bit dodgy.

VAMOS RAFA

ensaimada
10-23-2005, 03:00 PM
Guys let's face it. Rafa is not winning this. I got my hands on a live blog.. and it seems he made a lot of unforced errors. This match is about who serves better and ljubo's serve is spectacular. I don't know about that knee.. I'm sure it's causing some trouble but I don't think it's entierly to blame!

federated
10-23-2005, 03:03 PM
what's the blog link?

ensaimada
10-23-2005, 03:09 PM
http://susan-matchreports.blogspot.com/
Long live the hard-core Rafa fans!

Ti-Anne
10-23-2005, 03:25 PM
:bounce: 3-1 Rafa :bounce:

ensaimada
10-23-2005, 03:29 PM
No cantemos victoria :awww:

~EMiLiTA~
10-23-2005, 03:37 PM
this sb is fucked...it's showing 8-6 to ljubo in the 2nd set?? wtf is going on?

ensaimada
10-23-2005, 03:43 PM
Yeah, I know.. I've already turned to slower-but-more-accurate eurosport. I hate the organizing of the tour.. they have a completely chaotic web page and I bet things in Madrid aren't exactly swell.
Anyway... I benefit from not seeing every point, but just the games... 0-40 on the kid's serve is not such a pretty sight :devil:

veyonce
10-23-2005, 03:52 PM
Rafa won the 3rd set!!!

ensaimada
10-23-2005, 03:53 PM
Hmmm.. dare we hope?

Ti-Anne
10-23-2005, 03:56 PM
6-3 Rafa !!! Keep it up luv !!!

chicky841
10-23-2005, 04:01 PM
Lets hope, its all we have. Vamos Rafa!!

ensaimada
10-23-2005, 04:09 PM
I got this in General Tennis. http://www.tipex.sk/live.php Damn acurrate, if you ask me!
If Nadal wins this, I'll name my first born Rafael :crazy:
(let's all pray it won't be a girl :p )

chicky841
10-23-2005, 04:32 PM
lol then u can change it to rafaella

ensaimada
10-23-2005, 04:38 PM
It sounds hideous! Actually.. I'm not quite fond of Rafael, either, but what can I do.. he is now officialy in the decisive set! :D

chicky841
10-23-2005, 04:40 PM
lol. rafaella is quite horrid. oh well shouldnt of made that promise should u. haha. whooohooooo 5th set baby!!

ensaimada
10-23-2005, 04:53 PM
He broke back! What does he eat for breakfast? :eek:

chicky841
10-23-2005, 05:03 PM
Lol. No idea. haha. :D

casillas_girl
10-23-2005, 05:30 PM
Probably Frosties from Kellogs, it gives him Tiger power!! :D

adelaide
10-23-2005, 05:47 PM
What an exciting match it was!!! :banana:
He won 3-6 2-6 6-3 6-4 7-6(3) :D

:bowdown:

chicky841
10-23-2005, 05:47 PM
whoooo hooooo Rafa did it.

Cris
10-23-2005, 05:56 PM
What a match! :worship:

Bravissimo Rafa!!! :bowdown: :woohoo: :banana: :bounce:

ayena
10-23-2005, 05:56 PM
:bounce: What a great win!!! :bounce:
:woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo: :woohoo:

sonatinca
10-23-2005, 06:02 PM
Big congrats to Rafa from all my hurt!!!!!!

Björki
10-23-2005, 06:05 PM
:woohoo: :woohoo:
well done Rafa :bigclap:

RogiFan88
10-23-2005, 06:07 PM
Congratulations, Rafael! What a hard-fought win! Now you are tied w Rogi for titles won and TMSes won. :eek: Rafa's officially a monster!!! GRARRRRRRRRRRRR! Can't wait to see this match on TV [altho they will severely cut it].

RogiFan88
10-23-2005, 06:08 PM
He broke back! What does he eat for breakfast? :eek:

chocolate biscuits washed down w Cola Cao!! ;)

Scotso
10-23-2005, 06:11 PM
Amazing stuff from Rafael, I can't wait to see the highlights tonight.

casillas_girl
10-23-2005, 06:12 PM
what's cola cao?

casillas_girl
10-23-2005, 06:21 PM
some sceencaps from the Arther Ashe Kids Day.
(http://img447.imageshack.us/my.php?image=aa84wl.jpg)

[IMG]http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a210/casillas_girl/dsqsf.jpg

And an interview from Madrid:
http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a210/casillas_girl/41152819-M.jpg

alexito
10-23-2005, 06:29 PM
rafa is the best player of the world, no federer.
great work, great fighter, always.

alexito
10-23-2005, 06:45 PM
alexito, can you see the final ???
yes, I saw and recorded this match

blosson
10-23-2005, 06:51 PM
Woot. Congratulations to Rafa. He had a great come back after being 2 sets down. Great fighter. :)

MariaV
10-23-2005, 07:19 PM
Well, Rafa made me one happy girl for the next week!!! Here's the kid that NEVER gives up until the last point is played. :D :bounce. :bigclap: :yippee: :woohoo: GRACIAS RAFAEL!!!!!!! :worship: :worship: :worship:

Smasher
10-23-2005, 07:34 PM
Rafa is already watching Real Madrid's game against Valencia in Santiago Bernabeu. Quick boy ;)

Jennay
10-23-2005, 07:53 PM
Congratulations, Rafa! :D :aparty: Rest those knees! :hug:

PinkFeatherBoa
10-23-2005, 08:26 PM
I love how Rafa can win, even when not 100%.

Great fight Rafa! :yeah: (:

amierin
10-23-2005, 08:55 PM
Alexito I hope you post soon! :wavey:

knight_ley
10-23-2005, 08:55 PM
:woohoo:

alexito
10-23-2005, 09:01 PM
Alexito I hope you post soon! :wavey:
the video is the ceremony. in few hours will be in the videodownload post.

alexito
10-23-2005, 09:02 PM
Rafa is already watching Real Madrid's game against Valencia in Santiago Bernabeu. Quick boy ;)
the real madrid losttttttttt

eddie_hyden
10-23-2005, 11:22 PM
WOW what a great news to start the day. Woooohoooo!!!

I even dreamt of this match last night, hehe.

What a great time to be A Rafa fan ;p

cheers all!

RogiFan88
10-24-2005, 02:29 AM
what's cola cao?

Some sort of Spanish drink for kids...see http://www.colacao.es/index.aspx ;)

ataptc
10-24-2005, 02:30 AM
:woohoo: Woke up to a great result! Congrats Rafa - you're a real fighter :D

veyonce
10-24-2005, 02:54 AM
Post-Match Press Conference
Nadal: "Elsewhere in the world, it would have been impossible to defeat Ljubicic"

The Masters Series Madrid champion said that "the public's support was the key".
"Ljubicic has played unbeliveable", added Nadal.

Madrid, 23rd of October, 2005

Q. How many times have you recovered down two sets in a five set match?

Rafa: First time.

Q. What was the key point to change the match?

Rafa: The public's support, the crowd. Elsewhere in the world, it would have been impossible to defeat Ljubicic. Thanks to them, I won this final. I started to believe in myself a little more also.

Q. Your year is impressive. Will you have time to rest before Shanghai?

Rafa: Well, I want to keep my feet on the ground. I won two very important matches in my life: Davis Cup was one of them, and against Karlovic was another one on that surface. But, yeah, this year is a bit different. I feel comfortable, besides my physical problems.

Q. We thought a victory in three sets was possible because we saw you losing the first and second set. Were you doubting?

Rafa: Yeah, I had doubts throughout the whole match. Two sets behind, he was playing great. How many aces did he make? Do you know? 32. What do you think about that? I didn't even see the ball.

Q. How much of your success today do you attribute to your doctor?

Rafa: Well, last year's injury in my foot, too. He's always supported me. He always advises me what to do. I usually follow his advice. Sometimes I don't.

But I need to thank him for his opinion, because his opinion is usually the right one. He's a very good doctor.

Q. You said before some of Ljubicic's serve were very strong, even 234 kilometers per hour. How do you play against a player like this with this serve? How do you fight and keep consistent until the end?

Rafa: It's very, very tough because when you serve you have trouble. When the opponent serves, he sometimes makes two, three aces in a row. When you serve, you usually lose the game. Sometimes you come down, you lose your hopes.
You think, "Let's win the game." But it's very difficult to break his serve.

However, I was looking forward to winning something. I was enthusiastic anyway. You need to fight. Mentally, I was strong. That made me win. As I said, thanks to the crowd for their support.

Q. About the bands you are wearing on your knee, what is the effect they have?

Rafa: Well, it's just a soothing effect. It doesn't cure your knee. It keeps your patella a little bit higher. I think the doctor should explain it to you because I don't really know what it does. It reduces the impact point of the patella on your knee.

Q. Will you be in Paris?

Rafa: I hope to.

Q. I think it was a mental and physical effort. What percentage do you attribute to each of these aspects on the court? Are you about to travel tomorrow to Basel?

Rafa: I don't need doctors right now, I want to go to Basel and win the tournament. I don't need to travel, but I want to get there, see how I feel. I hope to play the tournament.

Q. Percentage?

Rafa: I think it was more mental than physical. Physically, I was feeling tired.

Q. An incredible year since the Davis Cup till now. Do you think your goals are getting higher and higher for next year? Are you afraid of the responsibility?

Rafa: Well, I think this year is almost impossible to repeat. I'm going to start next year in high spirits, but without pressure because this has been an incredible year, a year to remember, to keep at home like a picture you hang on the wall. Next year, I'll try my best, knowing and being conscious that I cannot repeat this.

Q. Are you going to go to the stadium tonight to watch Real Madrid?

Rafa: Well, I won't get there at 9:00, but I hope to be there for the second half.

Q. What do you think about Tiriac's comments about you? Do you think he was kidding?

Rafa: No, it's usual with him. He puts me down often. But he said in Paris when I learned to play tennis I would be great. I hope actually to improve as he wishes me to improve. I don't want to see his words as negative, but actually as positive words.

Q. When you were two sets behind, what did you think and feel?

Rafa: No, I think is very difficult match for sure, no? Two sets to zero down, Ljubicic playing unbelievable. I can do nothing because he's playing unbelievable. He serves very, very good.

Q. Did you try to change the way you played a little more?
Rafa: Yeah, I changed a little bit. I played a little bit more aggressive with my forehand, and the public support me a lot. For that reason I can come back, no?

Q. Is this and the Davis Cup the best support you have ever had?
Rafa: I think, yes, probably. I think, yes.

Q. Can you tell physically, how are you now? Are you okay? 70%?

Rafa: No, no, I'm okay. I have pain in the two knees. Today is a very, very tough match. But I feel okay. I will speak with the doctors and I will have a test.

Q. There's still a chance you might play Basel and Paris?

Rafa:I don't know. I think is a lot of tournaments. But my illusion is to stay in there in the two tournaments.

eddie_hyden
10-24-2005, 04:07 AM
Q. What do you think about Tiriac's comments about you? Do you think he was kidding?

Rafa: No, it's usual with him. He puts me down often. But he said in Paris when I learned to play tennis I would be great. I hope actually to improve as he wishes me to improve. I don't want to see his words as negative, but actually as positive words.

[/color]

what's this about tiriac's comments? do i miss sth? what did it say?

also, his english is a lot better now, at least i seldom see 'no' at the end of sentences nowadays..

veyonce
10-24-2005, 04:25 AM
Credits to Yoly & nou.amic of VR.com for the articles respectively:-

As soon as the match finished, the tv comentator and Emilio Sanchez Vicario made Rafa a quick mini interview, here is what I saw:

As soon as the match finished:-

TV commentator: Rafael Nadal the Champion!!! Incredible!! He deserves it, he'a a natural born winner... He has turned round this match everyone though he had lost.

Then the camera turns to Rafa who signs the camera lens and writes an 11 on it (I suppose it's for the 11 titles!!!). Then Rafa sits down on the bench and waits for the trophies to be given out.

TV commentator: We are going to talk to the champion. Our men are putting earphones and microphone on him at this moment.

Then the camera focuses Rafa, sitting on the bench with a towel and a flag of Spain over his shoulders. He has some big earphones with microphones on his head.

TV commentator: Rafa, can you hear us?

Rafa: Yes, yes..

TV comentator: Rafa, explain to us how have you been able to turn the match round when you were losing 2 sets down...

Rafa: The truth is I have no idea... The truth is that the match was turning out too complicated for me, Ljubicic was finding spaces and serving incredibly good... The only explanation I can find for turning round the match is that I've played here, at home and that the public has been incredible... I think it's been the best week of my life...

TV comentator: Have you done this for you or for this public who has been supporting you all week long?

Rafa: I suppose I did it for both of us. The truth is that I have to thank the public, who has been by my side day by day and I have to thank them again for today because I think they'v made 80% of this victory.

TV comentator: With 2 sets against you you have reacted on time and you won the last decisive tie break.

Rafa: Yes... The truth is that this match has been really equal... Pffff.... I am really really happy...

Emilio Sanchez Vicario: Rafa!

Rafa: Yes?

Emilio Sanchez Vicario: In those complicated moments, that you always decide the right thing to do, do you not get nervous?

Rafa: Yes, I think everyone gets nervous. Nerves are something you just can't hide nowhere, I think everyone gets nervous... I've always said that I think this way: If I'm nervous and feeling like this... then my rival must be the same or worse, no? It's a good thing to think in difficult moments.

TV comentator: Rafa, it's your 11th title of the year. You equal Roger Federer, this is important...

Rafa: Yes, this is really important, and apart of equaling Federer in titles it's important because I've made an unforgettable season... I don't know... I have no words... I'm so happy... after 2 bad years with difficult moments becasue of injuries, well it's all worth it now... (Rafa is almost in tears after saying this, you can tell it's difficult for him to talk and his eyes are watery)

TV comentator: Well and last, where do you place this tournament of the 11 you have won?

Rafa: Pfffffff.... Well.... I think... that after Roland Garros it's the one that has made me happier, no?

TV comentator: Well, Rafa thanks a lot, and congratulations champion!!!

Rafa: Thanks a lot.

Next they go to his uncle Toni, who is holding his 4 year old daughter in his arms:-

TV comentator: Can you believe this, after losing by 2 sets at first?

Toni: The truth is I can't believe it... after losing by 2 sets... and playing a lot worse than his rival at the beginning...

The Ivan seemed to drop his level a bit and he gave us options, so Rafa was able to turn things round...

TV comentator: This tournament is special for Rafa, Is this tournament special for you too?

Toni: It's always special to win in Spain, in Madrid. This was really special to him because he played badly here other years, and then at the beginning with the knee problems, he wouldn't have played if it had of been a different tournament...

TV comentator: Congratulations to all the family.

Then the trophees are given out. Rafa hugs everyone, when he hugs Pedro Muñoz he doesn't look very amused, he looks away, not a very sincere hug I can tell you...

And then Rafa gives his speech and thank yous, this is what he says...

Well... Good evening everyone.... First of all I want to thank all of you because without you it would have been impossible for me to win. The truth is that thanks to all of you I've lived one of the best weeks of my life... It's been a long time since I've felt like this...

I want to thank all my team, well my uncle... my parents, erm... I don't know... erm... Carlos Costa... mmm... Angel....

At the beginning of the week there were difficult moments when I didn't know if I was going to play or not, and at the end we took a decision... So I want to thank the doctor also, for all his support.

And, as always, I don't want to forget to thank all the ball boys/girls, the referee, the press manager, Benito, who's been with me all week... The sponsors, I want to thank the sponsors because without them nothing of this could be possible.

I hope that next year I can be here again and I hope that next year we can all be here together and united again... Thank you.


Then, later on in the evening news we got a few more images of after the match. Rafa is running and jumping around with the champagne bottle in his hand pouring it over Ljubicic while Ljubicic is doing the same. After that Rafa takes a drink, a mouthful of champagne, but instead of swallowing it he spits it out like if it was a fountain towards the camera and laughs.

After that we see him sitting on the floor with his legs spread out and he's kind of massaging them.

And finally a reporter makes him a quick question:

Reporter: You've been massaging your knees there, do they hurt?

Rafa: Well, they've given me a little bit of bother, they hurt when I bend down.. but I'm sure they'll get better and I'll be in perfect conditions for Shangai.

Reporter: Well, I'm not going to bother you anymore because I think you have a football match to go to (another Real Madrid match...).

Rafa:(laughs) Yes... I think I've made this match go on for too long... I'm only going to catch the second half now!!! (laughs again)

________________________________

Final victory for a genius

Epic victory for Nadal in Madrid gives him his eleventh title

Rafa Nadal celebrates a new title
(AP)MADRID (Corresponent - ESPNdeportes.com) - Do you remember that for days I have been saying that Rafael Nadal never ceases to surprise us all? Well, once again I have got to tell you that Rafa has done something that is difficult to explain in words.

That Nadal has won a new title is nothing new and will not strike you as unusual, however, it all looks rather different when one has been an eye witness to the days of suffering the Mallorcan has been through this week.

Although he declared that "it has been the best week in my life", he certainly has not played in a tournament with so many physical problems. All because of "the illusion it gave him to play in Madrid" according to his Uncle Toni Nadal, who explained that "if it had been any other tournament Rafa would not have played".

WITH THE KNEE MATCH-BALL SAVED, HE SWEPT ALL BEFORE HIM
On Wednesday morning ESPNdeportes.com talked with Nadal on his arrival at Madrid Arena and he confirmed: "I'll play because the inflamation on my knee has gone down a little". This news was a surprise.

On Tuesday, everyone had been saying that he would not be ready for Wednesday. The Mallorquin had saved his first match ball - the knee would let him play even if it was only at 70%. Madrid breathed a sigh of relief: their idol was ready, although nobody knew how he would perform. Just seeing him was already like a victory, so bad had things looked. He began with a convincing win against the Romanian Victor Hanescu.

On Thursday, the task was more difficult - facing him was Tommy Robredo - but he handed out more of the same. Friday arrived and with it an even more complicated assignment against an indoor specialist like Radek Stepanek. The result? The same as usual.

On Saturday he met another player in top form, Robby Ginepri. What happened against the American? I do not have to tell you that.

So, having swept aside four top class opponents without losing a set, he reached the final on Sunday. With the worst possible opponent, Ivan Ljubicic, who had gone 17 matches without losing on the way to winning two consecutive tournaments, the last one a week ago, in Vienna. The Croatian, who had already defeated Fernando Gonzalez and David Nalbandian, held the indoor record of the year with 29 victories. Frightening figures.

"RAFA, YOU ARE ALREADY A HERITAGE FOR HUMANITY"
An apprehensive Nadal stepped out on court for the final. The first two sets were won rapidly by the Croatian but, from then on, the Spanish Superman emerged. Nadal turned the game around in an epic manner and after almost four hours lifted his fourth Masters Series trophy of the year.

This is his eleventh title this year equalling Roger Federer in the number of trophies won. As usual. Rafa made light of it and thanked the public because they "have been the key to my ability to fight back. I think that if this final had been anywhere else in the world, it would have been impossible to come back and win". That is a lie, genius! Thank you very much for having made us enjoy ourselves so much this week, although you were not in condition to play. As they told you from the stands: "Rafa, you are already a heritage for humanity."

As has been said before, what makes Nadal great is his humanity. He treated ESPNdeportes.com marvellously well, as he did the rest of the press, and that you have to thank in the second best tennis player in the world. After having dealt with many top sportspersons, we can say that without a doubt Rafa is the best. It is to be hoped he never changes.

AFTER WINNING, A PHOTOGRAPH SESSION AND BACK TO THE BERNABÉU
So that you can best understand the humane quality of this young man of 19, let me tell you that at the end of the final, instead of taking himself off quickly to the dressing room, he spent almost half an hour on court having photographs taken with the model ballgirls, then the children who had been ballkids in the tournament, and last of all with the 50 volunteers who had given their services. All of this at his own request. The gesture of a genius.

Afterwards he had a quick shower, gave a press conference and was off once more to the Bernabéu to watch "his" Real Madrid. He arrived just in time for Raul's equalizer but, shortly after that Villa - with a penalty - put Valencia ahead once again. Like the good "merengue" he is, Nadal protested the penalty decision. It was a pity that he was not able to see the "whites" win again as they had a week ago against Atlético de Madrid and on Wednesday against Rosenborg in the Champions League.

The "merengues" are sad because Madrid was beaten, but on Monday Nadal's victory will be the only subject of conversation and, in the bars, the Madrid fans will be able to claim that, at least, the Mallorcan tennis player belongs to Real Madrid..

WHEN WILL HE BE BACK?
In theory, on Monday Nadal travels to Basle, Switzerland where his presence has been announced. However, everything will depend on how his knees are, and these knees are not fit to play, so unless he gives us another surprise (I do not think so this time) his next tournament will be in Paris although he would only be just about ready in time to play there, so it is probable that we will not see him again until the Masters Cup in Shanghai.

~EMiLiTA~
10-24-2005, 09:38 AM
i know i'm late...i got back last night and only heard about his result this morning...and this is the first time i've had to post a message here...but just wanna say i am so stoked that he won....i am sooooo happy for him!! :bounce: :banana:

he is such a cool guy and an awesome player...he deserves everything!!! and also congrats to ljubo who put up a great fight. hope rafa doesn't play until shanghai now...he needs rest, i feel tired just thinking about him!!

Ti-Anne
10-24-2005, 09:51 AM
Once again, words fail me to say how proud I am of this brat... :worship:
Rafael, you're just incredible, a marvellous player and an adorable being, please just remain the same whatever !! :inlove:

Me the best no ? ;)

casillas_girl
10-24-2005, 06:26 PM
Some sort of Spanish drink for kids...see http://www.colacao.es/index.aspx ;)
If Rafa makes publicity for it, it musst be a really delicious drink then! :D
Maybe it even tastes like Rafa! :p