~*~ Vamos Rafa in Indian Wells ~*~ [Archive] - MensTennisForums.com

~*~ Vamos Rafa in Indian Wells ~*~

Björki
03-04-2006, 05:26 PM
Good luck to Rafa in IW.

(1) FEDERER, Roger SUI v Bye
CALLERI, Agustin ARG v MASSU, Nicolas CHI
RUSEDSKI, Greg GBR v WAWRINKA, Stanislas SUI
Bye v (30) ROCHUS, Olivier BEL
(19) HRBATY, Dominik SVK v Bye
HORNA, Luis PER v BRACCIALI, Daniele ITA
Qualifier v YOUZHNY, Mikhail RUS
Bye v (16) GASQUET, Richard FRA

(11) KIEFER, Nicolas GER v Bye
SEPPI, Andreas ITA v MATHIEU, Paul-Henri FRA
Qualifier v SANGUINETTI, Davide ITA
Bye v (21) ANCIC, Mario CRO
(27) MONFILS, Gael FRA v Bye
PAVEL, Andrei ROM v Qualifier
Qualifier v (WC) WARBURG, Sam USA
Bye v (6) LJUBICIC, Ivan CRO

(4) NALBANDIAN, David ARG v Bye
Qualifier v LOPEZ, Feliciano ESP
Qualifier v DJOKOVIC, Novak SCG
Bye v (29) CHELA, Juan Ignacio ARG
(17) GINEPRI, Robby USA v Bye
MOODIE, Wesley RSA v SRICHAPHAN, Paradorn THA
SPADEA, Vincent USA v BERLOCQ, Carlos ARG
Bye v (14) FERRERO, Juan Carlos ESP

(10) FERRER, David ESP v Bye
KOHLSCHREIBER, Philipp GER v SERRA, Florent FRA
MAYER, Florian GER v (WC) PHILIPPOUSSIS, Mark AUS
Bye v (22) NIEMINEN, Jarkko FIN
(28) MOYA, Carlos ESP v Bye
Qualifier v SAFIN, Marat RUS
Qualifier v MURRAY, Andy GBR
Bye v (5) DAVYDENKO, Nikolay RUS

(8) AGASSI, Andre USA v Bye
GOLDSTEIN, Paul USA v MARTIN, Alberto ESP
Qualifier v CLEMENT, Arnaud FRA
Bye v (26) HAAS, Tommy GER
(17) ROBREDO, Tommy ESP v Bye
CARLSEN, Kenneth DEN v MULLER, Gilles LUX
(WC) QUERREY, Sam USA v DENT, Taylor USA
Bye v (12) BLAKE, James USA

(13) GONZALEZ, Fernando CHI v Bye
SODERLING, Robin SWE v MELZER, Jurgen AUT
TURSUNOV, Dmitry RUS v BEHREND, Tomas GER
Bye v (24) ANDREEV, Igor RUS
(32) VERDASCO, Fernando ESP v Bye
KARLOVIC, Ivo CRO v ZIB, Tomas CZE
Qualifier v ACASUSO, Jose ARG
Bye v (3) RODDICK, Andy USA

(7) GAUDIO, Gaston ARG v Bye
MIRNYI, Max BLR v SAULNIER, Cyril FRA
BJORKMAN, Jonas SWE v ROCHUS, Christophe BEL
Bye v (25) BAGHDATIS, Marcos CYP
(23) BERDYCH, Tomas CZE v Bye
(WC) YOUNG, Donald USA v HENMAN, Tim GBR
PASHANSKI, Boris SCG v SCHUETTLER, Rainer GER
Bye v (9) HEWITT, Lleyton AUS

(15) STEPANEK, Radek CZE v Bye
MALISSE, Xavier BEL v SANTORO, Fabrice FRA
VLIEGEN, Kristof BEL v Qualifier
Bye v (20) GROSJEAN, Sebastien FRA
(31) VOLANDRI, Filippo ITA v Bye
Qualifier v (WC) FISH, Mardy USA
VIK, Robin CZE v HERNYCH, Jan CZE
Bye v (2) NADAL, Rafael ESP

http://yelims2.free.fr/Fete/Danseuse03.gif VAMOS http://yelims2.free.fr/Fete/Danseuse03.gif

Lou_Lou_Ferrero
03-04-2006, 08:23 PM
VAMOS!!! mmmmmm..... rafa biting avvie.... :hearts:

lilfairyprincess
03-04-2006, 09:07 PM
lol i cant take the excitement...to come down from this amazing win against federer today to have to go back to round one again in just a couple of days!!

is the draw released 2moro?

anyways...buena suerte rafa!!! :hug:

maty
03-04-2006, 11:27 PM
oooohhhh can't wait

VAMOS RAFA :)

NaDALiTa
03-04-2006, 11:30 PM
buena suerte mi Rafito en Indian Wells :kiss:

yeahright
03-05-2006, 04:00 AM
hi all! :wavey:

after rafa's victory in dubai, i'm sooo looking forward to ams indian wells. so glad too that there's live coverage here although the different time zones would completely ruin my sleeping pattern (it would usually air from 2 am to 6 am). ick!

vamos rafa!!! :yippee:

veyonce
03-05-2006, 11:41 AM
Credits to La_Zingara of vr.com

THE LAKERS INVITE NADAL TO MEET KOBE BRYANT
As - 05mar06

The two next appointments for Rafa Nadal, Roger Federer and the "high society" of great world-wide tennis are two Masters Series in America : Indian Wells and Miami-Key Biscayne. These two Masters Series will close the first part of the season and will open the next one on clay. In 2005, Federer won both tournaments, beating Hewitt in Indian Wells and Rafa Nadal in that famous final in Miami : in five sets.

NBA

After four months of injury for Rafa, the ATP continues working on the promotion of Nadal's image in the U.S.A.. By american teenagers, the pull of the boy of Manacor is spectacular. At the moment, the ATP's Office of Public Relations tries to fit the dates according to the calendar of Indian Wells, near Los Angeles, so that Rafa can go to the Staples Center of L. to meet Kobe Bryant, responding to an official invitation of Los Angeles Lakers of the NBA, that already has been attended. Charismatic Superstars of Nike, Kobe and Rafa are wanted to make a specific meeting between both sportsmen. Nadal will today have an meeting with the press at the Palma airport, almost between the return flight from Dubai and the one to the U.S.A., where Rafa divides "with the maximum of illusion", in search of a tournament that he did not play in 2005. And in search of "snatching" another title to Federer.

NaDALiTa
03-05-2006, 02:13 PM
oh great Rafa and Kobe :yeah:

sonia
03-05-2006, 06:46 PM
¡¡¡¡Vamos Rafa!!!! :bounce: Good luck!!

Lou_Lou_Ferrero
03-05-2006, 07:51 PM
suerte SUERTE RAFA!!!

mallorn
03-05-2006, 09:36 PM
Another info about Rafa's off-court activities in Indian Wells, translated by nou.amic of vr.com. :hug:

Nadal's game of golf with Denson (during the Indian Wells tournament)
Rafa Nadal's humility surprises everyone, wherever he goes. When he visited the Nike headquarters in Beaverton (Oregon) a little more than a month ago, he met Charlie Denson, the chairman of the company. The chief executive, accustomed to dealing with stars whose feet do not touch the ground, was fascinated by how 'normal' Nadal is. Denson, who likes golf as well as tennis, has challenged Nadal to a game of golf at the golf course closest to Indian Wells, taking advantage of his participation in the first Masters Series of the year there. (from Marca)

mallorn
03-05-2006, 09:37 PM
And the entry list. I think the draw is to be released on Tuesday. :confused:

1 Federer, Roger SUI 1
2 Nadal, Rafael ESP 2
3 Roddick, Andy USA 3
4 Nalbandian, David ARG 4
5 Davydenko, Nikolay RUS 5
6 Hewitt, Lleyton AUS 6
7 Agassi, Andre USA 7
8 Ljubicic, Ivan CRO 8
OUT Coria, Guillermo ARG 9
10 Gaudio, Gaston ARG 10
11 Safin, Marat RUS 11
12 Gonzalez, Fernando CHI 12
OUT Johansson, Thomas SWE 13
14 Ferrer, David ESP 14
15 Hrbaty, Dominik SVK 15
16 Gasquet, Richard FRA 16
17 Ferrero, Juan Carlos ESP 17
18 Ginepri, Robby USA 18
19 Robredo, Tommy ESP 19
20 Stepanek, Radek CZE 20
21 Ancic, Mario CRO 21
22 Blake, James USA 22
23 Berdych, Tomas CZE 23
24 Nieminen, Jarkko FIN 24
25 Kiefer, Nicolas GER 25
26 Andreev, Igor RUS 26
27 Monfils, Gael FRA 27
28 Grosjean, Sebastien FRA 28
29 Rochus, Olivier BEL 29
30 Verdasco, Fernando ESP 30
OUT Kuerten, Gustavo BRA @30
32 Dent, Taylor USA 31
33 Volandri, Filippo ITA 32
34 Lopez, Feliciano ESP 33
35 Mirnyi, Max BLR 34
36 Moya, Carlos ESP 35
37 Henman, Tim GBR 36
38 Serra, Florent FRA 37
39 Hanescu, Victor ROM 38
40 Malisse, Xavier BEL 39
41 Rusedski, Greg GBR 40
42 Haas, Tommy GER 41
43 Youzhny, Mikhail RUS 42
44 Rochus, Christophe BEL 43
45 Sanguinetti, Davide ITA 44
46 Acasuso, Jose ARG 45
47 Wawrinka, Stanislas SUI 46
OUT Novak, Jiri CZE 47
49 Mathieu, Paul-Henri FRA 48
50 Martin, Alberto ESP 49
51 Srichaphan, Paradorn THA 50
52 Chela, Juan Ignacio ARG 51
53 Calleri, Agustin ARG 52
54 Tursunov, Dmitry RUS 53
55 Baghdatis, Marcos CYP 54
56 Melzer, Jurgen AUT 55
57 Seppi, Andreas ITA 56
OUT Puerta, Mariano ARG 57
59 Vik, Robin CZE 58
OUT Beck, Karol SVK 59
61 Moodie, Wesley RSA 60
62 Massu, Nicolas CHI 61
63 Murray, Andy GBR 62
64 Carlsen, Kenneth DEN 63
65 Clement, Arnaud FRA 64
66 Santoro, Fabrice FRA 65
OUT Escude, Nicolas FRA @65
68 Bjorkman, Jonas SWE 66
69 Karlovic, Ivo CRO 67
70 Goldstein, Paul USA 68
71 Mayer, Florian GER 69
72 Zib, Tomas CZE 70
73 Muller, Gilles LUX 71
OUT Montanes, Albert ESP 72
75 Spadea, Vincent USA 73
76 Soderling, Robin SWE 74
77 Berlocq, Carlos ARG 75
78 Djokovic, Novak SCG 76
79 Pashanski, Boris SCG 77
80 (WC) Philippoussis, Mark AUS
81 (WC) Young, Donald USA
82 (WC) Fish, Mardy USA
83 (WC) Warburg, Sam USA
84 (WC) Querrey, Sam USA
85 (Q)
86 (Q)
87 (Q)
88 (Q)
89 (Q)
90 (Q)
91 (Q)
92 (Q)
93 (Q)
94 (Q)
95 (Q)
96 (Q)

Alternates
OUT Johansson, Joachim SWE 78
IN Kohlschreiber, Philipp GER 79
IN Bracciali, Daniele ITA 80
IN Horna, Luis PER 81
IN Pavel, Andrei ROM 82
OUT Zabaleta, Mariano ARG 83
IN Vliegen, Kristof BEL 84
OUT Monaco, Juan ARG 85
OUT Saretta, Flavio BRA 86
IN Schuettler, Rainer GER 87
IN Behrend, Tomas GER 88
IN Saulnier, Cyril FRA 89
1. Hernych, Jan CZE 90
2. Phau, Bjorn GER 91
3. Reynolds, Bobby USA 92
4. Ascione, Thierry FRA 93
5. Lapentti, Nicolas ECU 94
6. Daniel, Marcos BRA 95
7. Dlouhy, Lukas CZE 96
8. Vanek, Jiri CZE 97
9. Wang, Yeu-Tzuoo TPE 98


VAMOS RAFA!

Jogg
03-05-2006, 09:48 PM
:bounce: Vamos Rafa :kiss:

NaDALiTa
03-05-2006, 10:02 PM
thanx mallorn :hug:

i should challenge Rafa at golf too :lol: :lol:

mallorn
03-06-2006, 04:04 PM
Folks, Susan (webmistress of vr.com) and Lopaka (of vr.com and MTF) are going to write a blog from Indian Wells. Here's the link, you should definitely check this out, should be very :cool: .

The link: http://iw2006.blogspot.com/


VAMOS RAFA in Indian Wells! And VAMOS Susan and Lopaka as well! :D

Lopaka
03-06-2006, 08:18 PM
Thanks mallorn! I'm sure professional tennis will survive.

Rafa can also be sure he will have two very determined fans cheering for him next week :yeah: :yeah: :yeah:

NancyIsabelle
03-07-2006, 06:03 PM
I will be far away, in Montreal, but still chearing out loud just the same !

Have fun, Lopaka. Really hope that you will have the pleasure to meet Rafa and shake hands with him.

Have a great time !

Nancy

NancyIsabelle
03-07-2006, 06:05 PM
By the way, does anybody knows how much Rafa received by winning in Dubaï $$$

Thank you !

Nancy
P.S. If we can access those informations on the ATP board, tell me where, please.

estrela
03-07-2006, 06:35 PM
By the way, does anybody knows how much Rafa received by winning in Dubaï $$$

Thank you !

Nancy
P.S. If we can access those informations on the ATP board, tell me where, please.

he won $1.000.000
you can find this at http://www.atptennis.com/en/tournaments/fullcalendar/ :)

NaDALiTa
03-07-2006, 07:36 PM
i thought that $1.000.000 was the price to share between the 32 players!!!!!!

mallorn
03-07-2006, 07:54 PM
i thought that $1.000.000 was the price to share between the 32 players!!!!!!
That's right. ;) Rafa won $187,500.
http://www.atptennis.com/en/tournaments/profile/495.asp

mallorn
03-07-2006, 08:08 PM
Thanks mallorn! I'm sure professional tennis will survive.

Rafa can also be sure he will have two very determined fans cheering for him next week :yeah: :yeah: :yeah:
:lol: I hope tennis will survive. ;)

Have lots of fun and cheer loud! Rafa seems to thrive on an audience that gets into the match, so I'm sure it'll help him. :D

And if possible (if your voice can take it ;) ) throw in a Vamos! from me too! I'll be cheering for Rafa in front of my telly (hopefully, because my coverage starts from 1/4 finals) but I he won't hear me from that far away. Good vibes know no bounds though. :)

I hope you'll get to see Rafa in the final. But whatever happens, have a great tournament! :wavey:

NaDALiTa
03-07-2006, 08:11 PM
Lopaka if you scream as loud as i screamed VENGGGGGGGGGGGAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA A in Marseille during the semi , for sure he'll hear you !!! But the crowd won't appreciate they seemed not very happy when i was screaming

mallorn
03-07-2006, 10:18 PM
The draw is out.

http://www.atptennis.com/posting/2006/404/MDS.pdf

Rafa's draw doesn't seem bad. He has a bye in the first round so his first proper match will be against the winner of Hernych v Vik.

He could potentially meet Stepanek in the 3rd round and Baghdatis/Berdych/Hewitt in the 1/4 final.

NaDALiTa
03-07-2006, 11:04 PM
the only one i fear on Rafa 's part is Hewitt , because they met 3 times and everytime Hewitt beat him !!! I'm sure Rafa can stop it cause he improved so much on quick surfaces , if he plays as he did in Dubai , we'll probably see him on final !!! I believe in him !!!!!!!!!!

vamos mi Rafito !!!!!!!!!

mallorn
03-07-2006, 11:21 PM
the only one i fear on Rafa 's part is Hewitt , because they met 3 times and everytime Hewitt beat him !!! I'm sure Rafa can stop it cause he improved so much on quick surfaces , if he plays as he did in Dubai , we'll probably see him on final !!! I believe in him !!!!!!!!!!

vamos mi Rafito !!!!!!!!!
Anything's possible, but I think Rafa is ready to win against Hewitt. The last time they played it took Hewitt five sets to beat him, and that was over a year ago in Australia, before Rafa exploded. Plus, Lleyton hasn't been on great form recently (just lost a final to Blake on Sunday). The IW surface is faster than Australia, but I still think Rafa would have the edge.

Oh, I forgot to cheer in my last post! Duh!

VAMOS RAFA! :bounce:

Rafa = Fed Killa
03-07-2006, 11:24 PM
Lets Go RAFA.
I wanna see another RAFA-FED showdown. (rafa winning of course)

NaDALiTa
03-07-2006, 11:42 PM
Anything's possible, but I think Rafa is ready to win against Hewitt. The last time they played it took Hewitt five sets to beat him, and that was over a year ago in Australia, before Rafa exploded. Plus, Lleyton hasn't been on great form recently (just lost a final to Blake on Sunday). The IW surface is faster than Australia, but I still think Rafa would have the edge.

Oh, I forgot to cheer in my last post! Duh!

VAMOS RAFA! :bounce:


you are right everything is possible!!!!!!! I remember that game , Rafa was so close , but it was the period when Lleyton was very strong (ndrl he reached the final) so it's a great performance for our little Rafa !! You are right Hewitt is not in good shape !!!! Don't worry Rafa will make it for us :rolleyes:

Damned how could you have forgotten to cheer Rafa !!!!!!


VAMOS RAFA

mallorn
03-07-2006, 11:49 PM
Damned how could you have forgotten to cheer Rafa !!!!!!

Mea maxima culpa! :lol:

http://www.cosgan.de/images/smilie/musik/k015.gif

VAMOS RAFA!

http://www.cosgan.de/images/smilie/musik/k015.gif

NaDALiTa
03-07-2006, 11:54 PM
Mea maxima culpa! :lol:

http://www.cosgan.de/images/smilie/musik/k015.gif

VAMOS RAFA!

http://www.cosgan.de/images/smilie/musik/k015.gif


with the great OLa you've made for him i accept your excuse !!!!! :kiss:
:wavey: see ya tomorrow i go to bed :)

give me a R
give me a A
give me a F
give me a A

VAMOS RAFA !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Lou_Lou_Ferrero
03-08-2006, 12:22 AM
thanx mallorn :hug:

i should challenge Rafa at golf too :lol: :lol:

i'm going to challenge him to a wrestle..... *day dreams*

LOVIN' THE MEXICAN WAVE SMILIES!!!

NancyIsabelle
03-08-2006, 01:03 AM
That's right. ;) Rafa won $187,500.
http://www.atptennis.com/en/tournaments/profile/495.asp



Thanks for the answer Mallorn !

Nancy :wavey:

estrela
03-08-2006, 10:00 AM
i thought that $1.000.000 was the price to share between the 32 players!!!!!!

owh sorry :smash: I already thought that it was alot of money for a single player but I never know how much a player gets :shrug: :silly:

estrela
03-08-2006, 10:07 AM
The draw is out.

http://www.atptennis.com/posting/2006/404/MDS.pdf

Rafa's draw doesn't seem bad. He has a bye in the first round so his first proper match will be against the winner of Hernych v Vik.

He could potentially meet Stepanek in the 3rd round and Baghdatis/Berdych/Hewitt in the 1/4 final.

I hope he plays against baghdatis. I think that that would be a very exciting match

MariaV
03-08-2006, 10:14 AM
OK, here my contribution!

VAMOS RAFA!!!!!!!!!!! :yippee: :bigclap: :bounce: :banana: :dance:

parissima
03-08-2006, 01:02 PM
Vamos Rafa :yippee: :hug:

mallorn
03-08-2006, 01:02 PM
You're welcome, Nancy! Are you "Nancy from Montreal" on the other board? :wavey:


The draw has been changed (twice!) but it's not really going to affect Rafa - it was the Agassi/Blake/Roddick quarter that was changed.

http://www.atptennis.com/posting/2006/404/MDS.pdf


nou.amic of vr.com translated a very interesting piece of news about Rafa's new coach who's going to travel with him when Uncle Toni can't. Thank you, nou.amic! :hug:


From www.elperiodico.es
__________________________________________________ ______

Roig to be Nadal's trainer in America

The Catalan coach has broken with Feliciano López

JAUME PUJOL-GALCERAN - BARCELONA

Rafael Nadal leaves for the United States today (Wednesday) to begin the American tour at the Masters Series in Indian Wells and Key Biscayne without his uncle Toni, who will join him in Miami a week later. The Mallorcan player's coach in the first tournament will be Francis Roig, who last week, after three years, brought to an end his professional relationship with Feliciano Lopez. The Barcelona trainer had already helped Nadal last year in the Montreal (where Nadal beat Agassi to win the title) and Cincinatti, although at the time he combined this job with training Lopez. Roig could remain in Nadal's team to help him on the tour during the weeks when Toni cannot accompany his nephew. "Rafael can get along without me, I'm not indispensable and I also think that the change will do him good."

(BTW Francis Roig is credited with turning Feli's service into one of his best weapons)

"Roig gets on well with him, he knows him very well, he's a great coach and, most important of all, he's a fine person," Toni summed his colleague up yesterday.

Nadal has spent a couple of days in Manacor with his family recovering strength after his victory over Roger Federer in Dubai. A win that enables him to join the American tour with his homework done and the confidence of knowing that he has recovered.

PREPARED - The injury that kept him off court for four months seems to have been forgotten. "It scarcely bothers him now (the minimum)," explained Toni, who was cautious when commenting about his nephew's chances in Indian Wells and Key Biscayne, where last year he played in the final against Federer and his grand season began.

"You have to take it bit by bit. For the moment everything has gone much better than we expected and we are confident that it will continue like that, but euphoria has to be avoided," affirmed the trainer with regard to these next tournaments.

parissima
03-08-2006, 01:08 PM
Thanks for posting the article, it's interesting :)
Glad to see he's prepared and rested.

NaDALiTa
03-08-2006, 01:19 PM
i'm going to challenge him to a wrestle..... *day dreams*

LOVIN' THE MEXICAN WAVE SMILIES!!!



:lol: :lol: :lol: good idea , but i'd rather challende him to a fight under covers it would be funnier :rolleyes: :rolleyes: :angel: :devil:

16681
03-08-2006, 06:18 PM
Vamos to Rafa in Indian Wells ;) He is obviously playing great right now and I hope he can keep it up ;)

Derek1206
03-08-2006, 11:46 PM
Best of luck Rafa! :yeah:

NancyIsabelle
03-09-2006, 01:26 AM
Yes Mallorn, I am the Nancy form the VR.com board. It's fun to meet some of the others VR guys and girls here.

Nancy ;)

fyi
03-09-2006, 02:48 AM
Hi Mallorn
Thanks for the article. I think it is a good idea to have Roig work with him.
IMO in addition to improve of SERVE, Roig can help in the aspect of improve his playing on Grass.
Looking at Feli, his serve is good, and he also play well on Grass.

veyonce
03-09-2006, 03:10 AM
Well, Baghdatis believe he can defeat Rafa when he was asked by an online user if he can defeat Rafa during the ESPN chat...


http://www.sport.es/default.asp?idpublicacio_PK=44&idioma=CAS&idnoticia_PK=286080&idseccio_PK=809&h=060308

http://img151.imageshack.us/img151/1518/sportes0308067vg.th.jpg (http://img151.imageshack.us/my.php?image=sportes0308067vg.jpg)
__________________________________________________ ____

Rafa Nadal, off to conquer America

www.sport.es 8/3/2006 by Neus Yerro/Pau Pons

Rafa leaving for California in his favourite travel shirt!!
http://i2.tinypic.com/qzjfwj.jpg

"My aim is to prove that I have got over my injury completely," says Nadal

A couple of days was all the rest he was able to have, for competition calls and Rafa Nadal is on a flight heading for California. A journey that involves stops in Madrid and Chicago before landing in Palm Springs. The player from Manacor, who left Palma a little after eight o'clock this morning, is off to start the American hardcourt swing that includes the first two Masters Series of the season, Indian Wells and Miami. Though he was only able to spend a few days at home, he looks on the positive side of it: "It was so little time because things went well in Dubai."

In the Californian desert, he will be accompanied by Francis Roig - it is not the first time that Feliciano Lopez's (ex) trainer has worked with him - and his uncle Toni will meet up with him at the Florida tournament in a couple of weeks time.

His trainer(Roig) thinks that Rafa "is in a position to do well, I don't know what his chances are, but I think he is among the favourites for the two tournaments, together with eight or ten other players."

Although he will arrive in Indian Wells with his first title of the season under his belt and having beaten the number one, Roger Federer, Nadal keeps advocating calm and declares that he has set out "untroubled, knowing that we are doing things well, and also very motivated to get back to competing. To see how it goes... It's only my third tournament of the year and in the two previous ones I've been lucky. But we are keeping to the same ideas as we had a few weeks ago and hoping to prove complete recovery from the injury, which has taken a long time."

Rafa only wants "everything to be fine, like up until now. My foot has stood up pretty well and that's a good sign. I'm ambitious tenniswise and will go at it 100% with the expectation of having a good tournament... and, if I can, of course, I want to win it but the objective is still the same as before: to recover fully from the injury." An injury that prevented him from carrying out the preparation that the Nadals would have liked but which favoured the improvement of one of the 'weak' points of his game: his serve. Currently, Rafa has increased the speed of his serve by 30 km/h.

When reminded that he is very close to beating the mythical Bjorn Borg's record of 16 titles before he reached twenty years of age (Rafa now has 13 titles), he opens his eyes wide. "I don't even want to think of it. I don't want to compare myself with him, one of the greatest players in history. I don't want to think of anything but myself and the first game I have to play," he says. What about Federer, the great rival? "In my opinion, the most important rival is the opponent facing me... and myself," he stated.

fyi
03-09-2006, 03:31 AM
Hi Veyonce,

Interesting Baggy said that, can you give me the link of his chat/interview.

If it is on clay it is NO WAY Baggy can defeat Rafa. Last year he won zero match on clay.

On other surfaces, may be possible, but Baggy still needs to prove a lot.

veyonce
03-09-2006, 04:05 AM
Here's the transcript posted in the General Messages thread:

Does no one care? :shrug: Here's Marcos's transcript :)
==================
Oxford, Ohio: What the heck was going through your mind when you took that first set from Roger in the aussie open final?

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:04 PM ET ) Nothing special. I was just playing tennis and that was all. After I started thinking a bit, that's what cost me the match. My mind wandered from the match.

Alin, College Station, Texas: What was the MAJOR mental change that happened to you in the last 3 years, that led to your tennis success? Thank you.

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:05 PM ET ) No mental change. Nothing changed. I just kept working hard and believing in myself. Staying strong and getting ready for your chance and being ready for it.

Zack, Toronto, Canada: What of the top seeds that you beat is the most memorable win for you: Roddick, Nalbandian, or Ljubicic?

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:06 PM ET ) Nalbandian, because it was an amazing match. I was losing 2-0. That made it special.

Jill (Los Angeles): Hi Marcos! I love watching you play. What do you think is your best shot? What surface is your favorite?

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:06 PM ET ) The best shot is everything! (laughs) The surface is hardcourt.

Deb (Boston, MA): Hey Marcos! It is a joy to watch you play tennis, you always look so happy on the court. Now that you reached a slam final, what are some goals you want to reach this year?

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:07 PM ET ) Stay healthy and play all the weeks. That's my goal.

Daniel Keltz Brooklyn, New York: How old were you when you started playing tennis?

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:07 PM ET ) Five years old.

Kurt (Orem, Utah): How did you get such a great following from your home country and how did you develop such a great passion for tennis?

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:08 PM ET ) I don't really know, because I wasn't in my country for a long time. But I get a lot of support from my country.

justin/ny: who is the best player you ever faced and how in the future are you going to improve your game so you can beat them

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:09 PM ET ) Best player is Roger. I'll continue my way. He's four years older so he has more experience. If I continue this way, hopefully one day I will beat him.

Andrew (London, UK).: Do you have any superstitions?

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:09 PM ET ) A lot.

Matt (Ann Arbor, MI): What part of your game are you working on most? Which part of your tennis game do you feel is most vulnerable?

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:09 PM ET ) The physical part.

Lynn Austin Texas: How do you deal with the pressure and expectations now that your have made it to a grand slam final?

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:10 PM ET ) It's not long after I played in the Aussie, it's only one tournament ago. I can't answer that one too well.

Leandro. Argentina: Hi Marcos! What do you think about th Eye Hawk. U think is a good idea for tennis? THanks. Greetings Leandro

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:12 PM ET ) I haven't really heard too much about it. It depends how they do it.

Steve (Milwaukee, WI: Which grand slam would you like to win most and why?

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:12 PM ET ) Australian Open, because it feels like home.

Ben São Paulo Brazil: You almost won a Grand Slam title "out of nowhere." The press compared you to Guga Kuerten because of that and also because of your charisma. Do you see yourself having as many fans around the world supporting you as you had in Australia?

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:13 PM ET ) I don't really know about that. It could be cool for tennis if those things happened not just for me but for all the players in tennis. It would be fun if it continues.

Andy (Houston): Of all the places you've traveled to play, where is your favorite?

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:13 PM ET ) Australia!

Yanis Hermitage, PA: Tikanis Marcos! Do you think tennis is becoming more popular in Greece and Cyprus?

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:14 PM ET ) Yes.

Faris (Chicago): Growing up who did you follow in tennis?

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:14 PM ET ) Rafter.

Brad Mattison (Carlisle, MA): How do you think you will fair at Wimbledon, does your game suit well to a grass court?

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:15 PM ET ) I really adapt myself really quickly. So sure, why not?

mario vancouver b.c.: How much does Federer's forehand spin up?

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:15 PM ET ) Lots! (laughs)

Lee, Arizona: What languages you speak/know? Fluent or not.

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:16 PM ET ) I speak three. Romanian, Hebrew, Spanish, Italian - I know "hello, how are you" in those!

Brad Mattison (Carlisle, MA): Do you think you can beat Rafael Nadal? He seems now to be a tough player on hardcourt.

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:17 PM ET ) Every day is different. Any day, anyone can beat anyone. That's what I think. So my answer is yes.

Chris (Fremont,Ca): Marco you are my new favorite player!!! How has life changed ever since your great performance in the Aussie Open... ohh by the way WHATS YOUR FAVORITE FOOD?

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:18 PM ET ) Lots!

Michael (Wauwatosa, WI): Loved watching you in Australia -- that was a great run. Which American do you think is playing the best right now? Roddick? Agassi? Blake? Good luck in Palm Springs!

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:19 PM ET ) Roddick and Blake are playing really good, but there are so many playing good right now. I think at the moment Blake is a tough player to play. Roddick is too, because of his serves. It's hard to tell.

Kuwata ( connecticut): How do you think about the new doubles rules? Do you want to enter the doubles more?

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:19 PM ET ) Sometimes I think about playing doubles, I do it just for practice. But I don't think about playing in tournaments.

Joey (Port St. Lucie): Marcos, who has the toughest shot in tennis and what is it?

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:20 PM ET ) Every thing is a tough shot. Even now everything is till tough. You need a lot of concentration on the court.

Marinos Georgiou (Larnaka): No question, just Marcos must know that Cyprus is with him wherever he is. Marcos you are the best!

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:21 PM ET ) Thanks.

Keisuke (japan): Did you like Japan when you competed at the AIG Japan OPEN?

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:21 PM ET ) I won two tournament as a junior there. I like playing there.

Morgan (St.Louis, MO): Hey Marcos! Will you be playing in both Indian Wells(Pacific Life) and the Nasdaq-100 Open?

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:22 PM ET ) Yes, both of them.

Oxford, Ohio: If you had to set expectations for yourself for the next 3 majors (and hopefully the year end masters) what rounds would you say would be your goal in each for this year?

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:23 PM ET ) Win them! That's what I want.

Bill (Florida): I noticed you keep your cool out on the court very well, you never get to down on yourself. Did you ever used to be a racquet thrower?

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:24 PM ET ) Yes, when I was a kid, but I still think I'm a kid. But I stopped throwing the racquets!

kasper : hello, marcos i saw al your match in austrailian open it was amaising! witch tornament are you going to play next

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:24 PM ET ) Indian Wells.

Ken (ny): About how many hours do you practice daily? (When there is no tournament(

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:25 PM ET ) Like 2 hours of tennis and four hours of physical workouts.

Justin (Hong Kong): Do you know who you play first round in Indian Wells yet?

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:25 PM ET ) No. Not yet. It begins on Saturday.

MBB (St.Louis, MO): It seemed like in your match against Roddick(at the Aussy Open) that you were reading his first serve relatively well. How were you able to do this so efficiently?

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:26 PM ET ) I don't really know! I don't really know. It was just a talent. I don't think that's work.

Drew (Indianapolis, Indiana): In your opinion, which of your shots is your best?

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:27 PM ET ) I don't know. Forehand on the run maybe?

Bonnie, Houston, TX: do you pay attention to the women's game?

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:27 PM ET ) Not really. There are sometimes when I watch, but not really.

SportsNation Marcos Baghdatis: (3:27 PM ET ) Thanks for all the questions!

fyi
03-09-2006, 04:28 AM
Thanks a lot...

mallorn
03-09-2006, 11:39 PM
I'm always curious what tournament sites look like, what kind of facilities players have etc. so I was glad to find this site map. Indian Wells Tennis Garden looks so impressive, now I envy Susan and Lopaka and everyone else who's going even more! ;)

http://img375.imageshack.us/img375/3383/mapofindianwellstennisgarden3q.th.jpg (http://img375.imageshack.us/my.php?image=mapofindianwellstennisgarden3q.jpg)

Lou_Lou_Ferrero
03-10-2006, 12:02 AM
looks amazing!!! why am i not a world class tennis player?? or, at the very least, a world class tennis players groupie???!!! darn it!

veyonce
03-10-2006, 07:38 AM
From Pacific Life Website:

Rafa's Press Conference On 9 March 2006 In Audio
http://www.pacificlifeopen.com/en/players/audio/

Pre-Tournament press conference (I): http://www.atptennis.atponline.net/en/common/TrackItA.asp?file=http://wm.atptennis-global.speedera.net/wm.atptennis-global/Nadal_06IW1.mp3

Pre-Tournament press conference (II): http://www.atptennis.atponline.net/en/common/TrackItA.asp?file=http://wm.atptennis-global.speedera.net/wm.atptennis-global/Nadal_06IW2.mp3

Pre-Tournament press conference (III): http://www.atptennis.atponline.net/en/common/TrackItA.asp?file=http://wm.atptennis-global.speedera.net/wm.atptennis-global/Nadal_06IW3.mp3

mallorn
03-10-2006, 09:30 AM
Thanks, veyonce!

This from Reuters:
Nadal and Roddick take aim at Federer in Indian Wells

Fri Mar 10, 2006 8:25 AM GMT
By Matthew Cronin

INDIAN WELLS, March 9 (Reuters) - Spain's Rafael Nadal is ready to further dent Roger Federer's aura of invincibility at the Pacific Life Open, which starts on Friday.

World number two Nadal broke Federer's 56-match hard court winning streak with a 2-6 6-4 6-4 victory over the Swiss in Dubai last Saturday.

It was the 19-year-old Nadal's third win over the seven-time grand slam champion in four match-ups. Seeded number two in Indian Wells, Nadal is looking to continue his roll.

"When I go to the court, I always try 100 per cent," Nadal told reporters on Thursday.

"I don't know exactly why the four times when I play him, I play so good."

Nadal also took down Federer in last year's French Open semi-finals en route to winning the title.

Not just a run of the mill clay courter, Nadal has won four titles on hardcourts.

With a vicious left-handed forehand and incredible speed, he seems to frustrate the world number one.

"The concentration and the physical (aspect) is important in my game," he said. "All my shots are not unbelievable, but all my shots are not bad. The serve is a little bit better this year and that's important."

POSITIVE RECORD

Despite his positive record against the Swiss, the easy-going Spaniard refuses to concede that he has his rival's number and doesn't believe he will overtake him in the rankings this year.

"I am very young and he is an unbelievable player, one of the best in history and the best player now by far," Nadal said. "If you look at the ranking, if you look at the points, if you look at the grand slam titles, it's no competition.

"And also the most important factor is that he is better than me."

World number three Roddick has struggled this year, calling the first two months of the season his "worst in four years."

In the three tournaments he's played, the 2003 US Open champion fell to eventual finalist Marcos Baghdatis at the Australian Open, Andy Murray in San Jose and Julien Benneteau in Memphis.

He withdrew from the tournament in Las Vegas last week so he could train with his brother John, his new coach.

Roddick, who owns a 1-10 record against Federer and lost to him in the last two Wimbledon finals, thinks he's been trying too hard to make changes in order to catch up to the Swiss.

"Maybe I became obsessed with that thought too much," Roddick said.

"I made adjustments with him in mind and you have to do that and then apply it against him, and not lose what you are doing against other people. It's to his credit that he puts the pressure on a lot of the guys."

Roddick believes his recent lapses in form are down to mental fragility.

"Its between the ears," the 25-year-old said. "Now it's a matter of getting edge back."
http://today.reuters.co.uk/news/newsArticle.aspx?type=tennisNews&storyID=URI:urn:newsml:reuters.com:20060310:MTFH82 395_2006-03-10_08-26-14_SP20276:1

Lopaka
03-10-2006, 09:42 AM
mallorn thank you for posting the IW site map. :worship: I was searching last evening but had no luck... should have just waited and figured you would be there with the information. :clap2:

Now all I've got to do is get Susan to provide a tournament 101 and I'll be ready to attack Indian Well with vigor. :bounce:

veyonce
03-10-2006, 03:00 PM
skysports.com

NADAL: FED STILL HAS THE EDGE ON ME
Friday 10th March 2006

Rafael Nadal insists he is still a long way behind Roger Federer, despite his superior head-to-head record against the world number one.

The 19-year-old Spaniard has won three of his four meetings with Federer, including last weekend's 2-6 6-4 6-4 victory in the final of the Dubai Open.

That result ended the Swiss star's 56-match winning sequence on hard courts and Nadal knows he needs to hit that level of consistency before he can claim to be on a par with the world's best player, who has seven Grand Slam titles to the teenager's one.

"I am very young and he is an unbelievable player, one of the best in history and the best player now by far," Nadal said.

"If you look at the ranking, if you look at the points, if you look at the grand slam titles, it's no competition."

"And also the most important factor is that he is better than me."

Federer and Nadal are the top two seeds at the first Masters Series event of the season at Indian Wells and it would be no great surprise should they meet for the third time in a final.

Meanwhile Nadal, now clear of the knee injury which cost him his place in the Australian Open in January, is happy that his game is improving all the time and that he ability to compete with Federer.

"When I go to the court, I always try 100 per cent," Nadal said. "I don't know exactly why the four times when I play him, I play so good."

"The concentration and the physical (aspect) is important in my game. All my shots are not unbelievable, but all my shots are not bad. The serve is a little bit better this year and that's important."

maty
03-10-2006, 08:22 PM
Well, Baghdatis believe he can defeat Rafa when he was asked by an online user if he can defeat Rafa during the ESPN chat...

hahahaha yeah right :devil: :rolleyes:

Rafa has favourite travel shirt,ermmm which shirt is that???? :o

NaDALiTa
03-10-2006, 08:29 PM
Baghdatis can defeat Rafa only in his dream....i remember that he said he could beat Federer :lol: :lol: he he beats Rafa as he beat Federer :lol: it would be quite funny

mallorn
03-10-2006, 08:40 PM
mallorn thank you for posting the IW site map. :worship: I was searching last evening but had no luck... should have just waited and figured you would be there with the information. :clap2:

Now all I've got to do is get Susan to provide a tournament 101 and I'll be ready to attack Indian Well with vigor. :bounce:
I had no idea this information would come in handy for you, I just thought it would be nice for everybody who isn't going to visualise the site better. Glad I could help. :lol:

I'm a little less jealous now, because I just found out that I do have the satellite TV channel that's broadcasting the tournament from round 1. :woohoo:

Also, in case someone missed it, Fee started a thread in GM about Indian Wells Internet TV Channel.
When fans log onto www.Pacificlifeopen.tv they will be able to see all the tournament action from the first round through to the finals with near live video highlights of every match, a roundup show of all the day's action, real-time point-by-point scores, exclusive on-court and locker room player interviews, post match press conferences, behind the scenes feature stories and classic matches from previous years.

To celebrate the launch of this great new service the Pacific Life Open and TPL will offer 100% free access for the entire duration of the tournament!

More info in Fee's thread: http://www.menstennisforums.com/showthread.php?t=72055


Have lots of fun, Lopaka!

http://www.cosgan.de/images/smilie/musik/k015.gif

VAMOS RAFA!

http://www.cosgan.de/images/smilie/musik/k015.gif

mallorn
03-10-2006, 11:54 PM
Funny article from Tennis X ;)

Posted on March 10, 2006

Tennis-X Upgrades Nadal Stock for Indian Wells

By Tennis-X.com Staff

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: March 10, 2006

Date: 10-Mar-06
Stock: Rafael Nadal
Action: Upgrade
From: Buy
To: Strong Buy

http://img88.imageshack.us/img88/6898/nadaldubaipolo7ye.jpg (http://imageshack.us)

INDIAN WELLS, Ca., March 10, 2006 (Tennis-X) -- Based on strong Q1 results and a continued gross margin improvement outlook for March, today Tennis-X.com analysts upgraded Rafael Nadal (NYSE: RAFA) to "strong buy" as the title favorite over world No. 1 Roger Federer at this week's Masters Series-Indian Wells, the Pacific Life Open.

"Federer simply doesn't like playing Nadal, who has now beaten him more times on hardcourt than on clay," said Tennis-X analyst Richard Vach. "The heavy, high-bouncing lefty spin -- no other player can make Federer uncomfortable like that during rallies on a regular basis. And it's scary to think that if he didn't have that comeback from two sets down last year in the Miami final, Federer would be 0-4 against Nadal."

Nadal is solidly positioned to continue market share gains, driven by solid results with the title in Dubai where he turned around a first-set loss in the final against the Swiss who was arguably playing his best tennis of 2006 before a startling two-set drop off.

Nadal is known to be at his market-earning best when going into self-effacing mode, and sent investors scrambling after winning Dubai, then this week announcing he isn't worthy of Federer comparisons.

"I am very young and he is an unbelievable player, one of the best in history and the best player now by far," the propitiatory Nadal told reporters. "If you look at the ranking, if you look at the points, if you look at the grand slam titles, it's no competition. And also the most important factor is that he is better than me."

After the consecutive Indian Wells and Miami Masters Series events, analysts agree Nadal will likely further capitalize on a growing market opportunity during the claycourt season, though with many claycourt points to defend and missing the Australian Open with injury, a run at No. 1 is unlikely. Nevertheless, analysts believe Nadal is capable of delivering solid growth through 2006.

SECTOR NEWS

Growth in the Spanish sector at Indian Wells should otherwise be slow, with "hold" actions issued for former No. 1 and IW runner-up Carlos Moya, Tommy Robredo, and Fernando Verdasco who is heading toward a 3rd rd. meeting with Andy Roddick, with "sell" ratings on Juan Carlos Ferrero, David Ferrer who couldn't handle the Top 10 pressure earlier this year, Al Martin and the struggling Feliciano Lopez.
http://www.tennis-x.com/story/2006-03-10/c.php

And a serious one from sport.telegraph:

Nadal relishes pressure

By Alix Ramsay in Indian Wells
(Filed: 11/03/2006)

There is no escaping pressure. However good a player may be, there is no getting away from the need to be better, to be stronger or to win more. The trick, according to Rafael Nadal, is learning to love it.

Nadal has just arrived in California for the Pacific Life Open, only his third tournament of the year after a four-month break to recover from a foot injury.

His comeback is going well - he beat Roger Federer to win the Dubai title last week - but it is a long road ahead for the 19-year-old.

With the French Open and 10 other titles to defend this year, giving his rivals a head start on the season has left him with much to do. But although he needs to make up for lost time, he knows he cannot flog himself around the circuit as he did last year. As for catching Federer at the top of the rankings, Nadal believes he has no chance.

"I think I begin late, which is a factor," he said. "And also the most important factor is that Roger is better than me.

"But I think I play tournaments always with calm. I think I like the pressure. When you feel the pressure, you just have to recognise it, you have to be aware that you have it because it's actually one of the nicest parts of playing the game."

The Spaniard faces either Jan Hernych or Robin Vik in his first match here.
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/main.jhtml?xml=/sport/2006/03/11/stnada11.xml&sSheet=/sport/2006/03/11/ixtenn.html

veyonce
03-11-2006, 06:06 AM
Nadal proving tough on Federer
Rising Spanish star more than holds his own against world's No. 1 player

By Bud Collins
NBC Sports
Updated: 10:11 p.m. ET March 10, 2006

INDIAN WELLS, Calif. - If you've got a big, broad-shouldered left-handed, Spanish-spouting, teenage hunk shadowing you, well, your name must be Roger Federer.

Don't look now, Roger, but you're being stalked by Rafael Nadal, who's admittedly a long way back at No. 2, but who is dedicating his life to making yours miserable, even though you are No. 1.

Putting pressure on Federer
Coming off his 2-6, 6-4, 6-4, victory over Federer in the recent Dubai final, the 19-year-year old Nadal is 3-1 in career meetings with the Swiss master. It appears that this could be the start of a great foe-ship.

Next collision? Maybe the final of the Pacific Life Open that is unfolding here at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden? Could be. They're evil-eyeing each other from opposite ends of the draw, and everybody in town wants them to stage a championship hardcourt duel in the desert on the last Sunday of the tournament, March 19.

“Nadal pressures me, no doubt about it,” says Federer. “He moves so well and his forehand is huge. Even on the run he can hit it with spin to the backhand court, moving it away from me. And being left-handed makes everything different.”

So far, so good for Nadal
The spectacular rising star, Nadal, who is to celebrate his 20th birthday while defending his French Open title in June, has nearly been unbeaten against Federer. Federer's lone victory over Nadal was in the final of the Nasdaq-100 at Key Biscayne, Fla., a year ago.

Nadal leaped to a two-set, 4-1 lead, and was two points from victory, but couldn't hold off a frantic, but effective Federer, 2-6, 6-7 (4-7), 7-6 (7-5), 6-3, 6-1.

Happy Birthday to me was Nadal's theme in Paris where he celebrated his 19th by spilling Federer in last year's French Open semifinals, 6-3, 4-6, 6-4, 6-3. That was prior to bouncing Argentine Mariano Puerta for the title, 6-7 (6-8), 6-3, 6-1, 7-5.

Hardcourts to his liking
Andy Roddick, a slipping No. 3, may have been eclipsed for good by Federer and Nadal, who have risen above the American.

Roddick who was ranked No. 1 in 2003, says, “Nadal isn't just a typical clay-court, baselining guy. He hits harder than the other clay courters, and he has shown at Key Biscayne and Dubai that he can handle hardcourts well.”

“Sure I like the hard courts,” says Nadal, who at Indian Wells is playing only his third tournament of the year. A foot injury kept him out of last year's Masters, and this year's Australian Open.

“It's better. No pain. I feel good now,” Nadal said.

As for his win over Federer in Dubai, Nadal calls it, “unbelievable.”

Said Nadal, “Only my second tournament. I lose first set. It's 1-0, 30-0 in second. I win that game, and I say to myself I can win this set. I don't know why. Roger's not so good in the third, and I have confidence. I don't know why,” he grins and shakes his head as the dark hair flaps and he struggles with his English.

No secrets to Nadal's success
So what does Nadal think of all his success over Federer?

“Unbelievable,” he said. "I try my 100 percent, but I don't know why I bother him. Ask him. My best weapon? Concentration.”

"I have normal forehand, normal backhand, serve a little better this year, but I need more matches. I have no chance to catch Roger this year.”

"You know the most important factor? He's better than me. One of the best in history.”

Federer appears to have the better chance to make the Indian Wells final. His upper half of the draw is fairly barren while Andre Agassi, Andy Roddick, James Blake, Fernando Gonzalez and Marcos Baghdatis all lurk in the bottom half with Nadal.

Good natured as ever, obviously enjoying himself, Nadal is tickled to have just obtained his first driver's license.

Look out, Roger, Raffy may not know how to use the brakes.

© 2006 MSNBC Interactive

veyonce
03-11-2006, 06:09 AM
Federer plays down talk of rivalry with Nadal
Sat Mar 11, 2006 4:53 AM GMT

By Matthew Cronin

INDIAN WELLS (Reuters) - World number one Roger Federer said it was too early to tell whether he and Rafael Nadal will establish a major rivalry.

Spanish teenager Nadal broke Federer's 56-match hard court winning streak with a 2-6, 6-4, 6-4 victory in Dubai last Sunday and boasts a 3-1 record against the Swiss

But Federer said the competition was too fierce to develop a rivalry in the fashion of Andre Agassi and Pete Sampras.

“I've played him only four times and obviously we are number one and number two, but we'll have to see how it progresses,” said Federer, the top seed at this week's Pacific Life Open.

“There are more players than just Nadal. The other players will play well here too at Indian Wells.”

“I don't think we can call it a rivalry yet. There's just to many great players around.”

But eight-times grand slam champion Agassi think the pairing has the makings of a classic and said that the left-handed Nadal, who is seeded second at Indian Wells, has the game to challenge Federer.

“I think it would be impossible for anybody to dominate in the past two years the way Roger did,” Agassi said.

“It's great to see that the one person that closes to him in the rankings is his most difficult matchup. Nadal can hit that one shot that everybody wishes they can hit against Roger and that's getting the ball up to his backhand side.”

“It's isn't brain surgery. Nobody likes it up there. That's the only area that Roger doesn't hurt you with. So it's great to see a matchup that lends for a rivalry for a long time to come.”

Swiss Federer believes the more he plays the Spaniard, the more success he'll have against him.

“He's a big guy,” Federer said. “He moves very well for his height and he's got strong legs. He gets back many balls and he's got a great forehand, great spin.”

“He reads the dimension of the court very well. He's got a good all round game. We don't have to many of those, but I enjoy playing him. I'm at the top of my game so, when I win or lose, I don't freak out.”

mallorn
03-11-2006, 11:28 AM
More of what Agassi said to Matthew Cronin (see article posted above by veyonce).

From tennisreporters.net:

Agassi Wants Spot on Team

(…)

Go to Foxports.com for my piece on Rafa Nadal and his budding rivalry with Roger Federer, but tennisreporters.net wonks might enjoy this fairy deep analysis from Agassi as to why the Spaniard is 3-1 against the Swiss. It's the lefty forehand, the muscle, the speedy and did we forget to mention, the lefty forehand again.

"Nadal can hit that one shot that everybody wishes they can hit against Roger and that's getting the ball up to his backhand side," Agassi said. "It's isn't brain surgery. Nobody likes it up there. That's the only area that Roger doesn't hurt you with...Nadal is one of the fastest, strongest guys out there. But if he's right handed, Roger is winning that 10 out of 10 times because it hard to get that ball to Roger because he moves so well and can hurt you in so many ways. But Nadal can hit the inside out forehand and if Roger doesn't do something with that, the next ball is way up to the backhand. The when he slices it, he's slicing it to a guy who has a lot of wrist on the forehand. I hit that shot, Roger slices it real short to my backhand. I've got to get it with two hands, dig it out and hope I hit it in a certain spot or he's going to hurt me. But Nadal can get over there and whip it in any direction so it's a match up issue."

More from Agassi, when asked what Federer's place in history would be if he retired today: "The single greatest underachiever."

(…)

Here's Federer's defining quote on Nadal, who is a substantially more impressive physical specimen than the rest of the top five. He looks 6-2, 190, all muscle.

"He's a big guy," Federer said. "He moves very well for his height and he's got strong legs. He gets back many balls and he's got a great forehand, great spin. He reads the dimension of the court very well. He's got a good all round game. We don't have to many of those, but I enjoy playing him. [But] I'm at the top of my game so, when I win or lose, I don't freak out."
http://www.tennisreporters.net/scoop_agassidc_03106.html

MariaV
03-11-2006, 11:29 AM
Rafa will play doubles with Mikhail Youzhny. Interesting choice.

mallorn
03-11-2006, 11:33 AM
Rafa will play doubles with Mikhail Youzhny. Interesting choice.
:eek: Very! I didn't know he was playing doubles, let alone with Youzhny.

MariaV
03-11-2006, 11:59 AM
They'll play vs the 7th seed Erlich/Ram so they'll hardly go any further. Rafa probably just wanted some match play there with all the rain delays & stuff.

lilfairyprincess
03-11-2006, 01:55 PM
wonder why he picked to play with Youzhny...well anyways- gud luck rafa :yeah:

eddie_hyden
03-11-2006, 04:28 PM
yup. is this supposed to be an 'interesting' match-up? i'm not familliar with Youzhny, anything that he's good at that Rafa could pick a point or two?


wonder why he picked to play with Youzhny...well anyways- gud luck rafa :yeah:

mallorn
03-12-2006, 12:09 AM
Another article by Matthew Cronin, from FoxSports:

Nadal a formidable challenger to Federer

Matthew Cronin / tennisreporters.net

INDIAN WELLS, Calif. - Rafael Nadal says he's all but impervious to pressure. In fact, he loves playing in a boiling coliseum.

"That's part of the fun; that's what I most enjoy, the pressure," said the happy-go-lucky Spaniard — the only man to own a winning record against the seemingly invincible Roger Federer since 2004.

Federer and Nadal are the top two seeds at this week's Pacific Life Open in the California desert and could meet in the final. With No. 3 Andy Roddick and former two-time No. 1 Lleyton Hewitt not having posted a win against Federer since 2003, men's tennis needs a big-time rivalry.

http://img391.imageshack.us/img391/7608/53998143626xz.jpg (http://imageshack.us)

Rafael Nadal seems to own Roger Federer. (Victor Romero / Associated Press)

The bullish Nadal versus the majestic Federer could be just what the ATP Tour doctor ordered. Federer says the matchup is still too young to be called a true rivalry, but it's certainly going that way in the public's mind.

"He's a good player. It's as simple as that," Federer said. "He's a terrific scrambler and he brings something else game as a great lefthander."

The tantalizing teen also brings a lot of panache to the sport and, with his rapid-fire fist pumps and back bends, has quickly become a crowd favorite.

He's also favored to be a thorn in the Swiss' side for the rest of his career.

"I don't know exactly why the four times when I played him, I played so good," said Nadal, who broke Federer's 56-match hard court winning streak with a 2-6, 6-4, 6-4 victory over Federer in final at Dubai last Sunday.

Even though he owns a 3-1 record against the great Swiss, the second-ranked Nadal refuses to say that he has grabbed a tight hold on their rivalry. But the 19-year-old does has his hands around Federer's neck; and regardless of what he'll opine in public, he knows his game really bothers the world's No. 1-ranked player.

"He really matches up well against Federer," Andy Roddick said. "He's not your run-of-the-mill clay-courter. He moved great on slow hardcourts and has a lot of weapons."

Indeed. Nadal is blessed with a huge lefty forehand, a consistent, quick fisted, two-handed backhand and the legs of a 100-meter gold medalist. Moreover, he knows how to play himself back into matches and has a good understanding of how to develop winning strategies.

"The concentration and the physical are important in my game," Nadal said. "All my shots are not unbelievable, but all my shots are not bad. The serve is a little bit better this year, and that's important."

What's most important is that he appears to have enough confidence and wherewithal not to plunge in a sophomore slump. Last year, Nadal won 11 tiles, the same number that Federer did. He didn't go absolutely nuts with the type of titles he won — like Federer did (among his achievements, the Swiss took two Slams, Wimbledon, the U.S. Open and four Masters Series titles), but Nadal did go somewhat crazy, winning his first Slam at the French and taking four other Masters Series crowns: two on clay and two on hard courts.

However, the Spaniard paid the price for playing week in and week out, injuring his foot in November, which took him out of action until two weeks ago. So while Federer toughed out the Australian Open in brilliant fashion for his seventh Grand Slam title, Nadal sat at home wondering whether or not the high bounces of the Rebound Ace Down Under would have played into his favor.

But that's part of the learning curve for any young player, especially a 6-foot-1, 188-pounder who looks more like a college fullback than a collegiate tennis counter-puncher.

His foot feels fine now, but he won't be chasing indoor clay court crowds all year long in 2006. He knows if he's to become No. 1, he has to save himself for the big tournaments. But it's tough to keep the keen teen off his favorite playground.

"For sure, I'm going to play less matches because I think it's very difficult to win the same number of matches as last year," Nadal said. "Maybe I'm going to play a little bit less, but I like playing tournaments; so if I feel good, I going to play for sure."

In order to not to put himself under the harsh glare of the world's spotlight, Nadal refuses to state that he is Federer's equal. He doesn't believe he will overtake him in the rankings this year and won't venture to say that his game has already developed to the point where he considers himself Federer's equal.

"I am very young, and he is an unbelievable player, one of the best in history and the best player now by far," Nadal said. "If you look at the rankings, if you look at the points, if you look at the Grand Slam titles, we don't have competition. And also the most important factor is that he is better than me."

But it sure doesn't appear that way when they play. Nadal has something that few other players have, the ability to batter Federer's one-handed backhand until he bleeds. Then the Swiss starts to press and gets out of his rhythm.

Andre Agassi, arguably the game's most insightful analyst, says that it's simply Nadal's lethal left hand that makes him so dangerous against Federer.
And because Nadal makes Federer's racket bend a little, men's tennis is far better off today.

"Nadal can hit that one shot that everybody wishes they can hit against Roger, and that's getting the ball up to his backhand side," Agassi said. "It isn't brain surgery. Nobody likes it up there. That's the only area that Roger doesn't hurt you with. So it's great to see a matchup that lends for a rivalry for a longtime to come."
http://msn.foxsports.com/tennis/story/5399808

mallorn
03-12-2006, 12:25 AM
yup. is this supposed to be an 'interesting' match-up? i'm not familliar with Youzhny, anything that he's good at that Rafa could pick a point or two?
I was surprised because I think it's the first time Rafa's playing doubles with a non-Spanish speaking partner. He also played a doubles match in Dubai before his first singles match. I suppose it's going to be a good warm up to the tournament for him, like Maria said (and he'll practise his English too, I think. ;) ).

mallorn
03-12-2006, 12:42 AM
From Roger Federer's press conference:

Q. During that first set against Nadal, you were what I considered unbeatable. What clicked in the second couple games, couple --

ROGER FEDERER: You know, I think it's hard, you know, to keep it up, to play really, really aggressive, you know, like I did in the first set, you know. I've got to find a way where you don't over do it. I think I got into the match better in the second and third, so it was even all the way till the end. But, you know, he won the crucial points in the end and that was a pity, but I was still pleased the way I played.

Q. We asked Nadal yesterday, what he's got that seems to trouble you and he said to ask you. What does he got that seems to trouble you?

ROGER FEDERER: Ask him that back. He's just a good player simple as that. But I enjoy the challenge with him. You know, he's a terrific scrambler and he brings something else to the game, you know, as a great left hander, and we don't have many of those. You know, so I consider that a tough thing to do, you know. To play against a good lefty, you know, really matters, so, yes, the more matches I play against him, also it's going to be easier for both of us to know. We're more predictable by now, the first time we played in Miami a couple years ago. But I enjoy playing him.

Q. Roger, is he different to play compared to when Lleyton had the wining streak over you a few years ago?

ROGER FEDERER: Well...

Q. What I'm getting at is, you've got a winning record over Hewitt at the moment; Hewitt had a winning record over a few years ago, so is there much of a difference?

ROGER FEDERER: Well, it was very different because I look at things much more relaxed now than before, you know, where guys at winning records, I would not like the guys because they were beating me. I thought they were not nice people, you know (laughter). And, I don't know, I couldn't really like the guy when he was beating me, and we were the same age, you know, so that changed, too. It was a big rivalry between us and we played a lot in the early part of our career and also even in juniors, under-16s. One time where I saved match point and beat him, so you cannot compare. I'm at the top of the game, so when I lose or win, you know, I don't freak out. I'm much more relaxed after all, so you cannot compare, really.

Q. Roger, what sets him apart from the other so-called good scramblers? Is it just being a lefty? Is it the forehand or is he just all around solid?

ROGER FEDERER: Well, I guess it's got a lot to do with him being left-handed, you know, but then, you know, he's a big guy. He moves very well for his height, you know, there's no question, and he's strong in his legs, you know. He gets back many balls, you know. He's got a great forehand, great spin, so he uses that well, you know.

He reaches the dimension of the court very well, I think, and he's very all-around, too, so he's got many strengths in the game.

Q. Does that wear on you after a set or two just constantly getting that heavy ball back and back and back?

ROGER FEDERER: Oh, no, I don't have that problem at all. Even at the French, you know, that didn't bother me, so that's a good sign.

(…)

Q. Roger can you call this is a rivalry now with you and Nadal or is it still too young?

ROGER FEDERER: I've played only four times, but obviously we've been No. 1 and No. 2 for -- for a little bit now and I guess we'll have to see how it progresses. But I always said, you know, there's more players than just Nadal, and I still believe that. And I think, you know, the other players will play well, too, here in Indian Wells, and the game coming up. We'll see if Nadal can back it up at the French, at the clay court season and everything. But I don't think we can call it yet a rivalry. There's just too many other great players round.

Q. Backing it up, you mean the pressure once the clay court season starts?

ROGER FEDERER: No. I mean, pressure, I think he's going to handle that without a problem. It's just to see if he can play another fantastic clay court season because it's so hard to do it. Same for me, I have to show Indian Wells and Key Biscayne, you know. That's going to be hard, too. I've got the pressure now. He's got it later on. It's going to be interesting, the next couple months.
http://www.noticias.info/asp/aspComunicados.asp?nid=153817&src=0

From Marat Safin's press conference:

Q. Andy and Roger talked about great respect about Nadal. What do you think about Nadal as a player? Does he have potential to be also great?

MARAT SAFIN: He's already great. He's definitely one of the best newcomers of all times and he's just 19 years old and already won Grand Slam title. He won I don't know how many titles last year. I think 10, 11. He won already this year, beat Roger, a couple of times, and he's definitely going to be huge.

But let's see how -- what's going to happen to him with injuries because he suffered a lot of them already in a young age. But I think people are treating him really well and he has a pretty good group behind him, so I think he will stick around for a long time and he can be around.

(…)

Q. Just go back for a moment to Nadal. Andre and Roger thought that being a lefty, that that's the biggest advantage. What do you think?

MARAT SAFIN: It's one of the biggest advantages that he has, lefty. Not many players on the tour that are lefty, so every time you play against a lefty, it's completely different, opposite - opposite spin. And everything comes -- it's difficult to return from that vantage.

Also he is very fast and he knows he's a big fighter. He serves well. Whole combination.
http://www.noticias.info/asp/aspComunicados.asp?nid=153816&src=0

From Lleyton Hewitt's press conference:

LLEYTON HEWITT: Just sort of happens naturally, I think, more than anything. You know, just the way I -- you know, I'm very competitive out there in whatever I do and in any situation.

So yeah, I think it's good to have a lot of different personalities out there and I think, you know, Nadal is very similar. We're both at very young ages, very hungry out there and want to succeed and want to get the best out of ourselves. And I think that's one reason why the two of us have been able to do it at such a young age as well.

(…)

Q. Lleyton, after last week in Dubai you might consider Roger just that little bit beatable?

LLEYTON HEWITT: When Roger's played in big matches in big tournaments, you know, he hasn't put too many feet wrong. You know, obviously, last week -- I haven't seen a point of the tournament, but he was obviously, you know, in cruise control there for a little bit, 6-1, Love-30, and maybe lost concentration a little bit. And that's where you go back to Nadal's competitiveness out there.

Yeah, he's got a never-say-die attitude. It obviously paid off for him last week. Yeah, whether Roger is a bit more vulnerable, we'll wait and see, but he's still the man to beat.
http://www.noticias.info/asp/aspComunicados.asp?nid=153815&src=0

From Andre Agassi's press conference:

Q. So Nadal takes three out of four from Roger. (Inaudible)?

ANDRE AGASSI: Oh no absolutely. What's great to see is -- well, I think it would be nearly impossible for anybody to dominate in the nature that Roger has over the last few years. It's great to see that the one person that's probably closest to him is actually a difficult matchup for Roger. I mean Nadal can hit the one shot that everybody wishes they could hit to Roger, and that's the ball up and get it over his backhand side. I mean, that's not -- that's not brain surgery. Nobody likes it up here.

But it's unfortunately the only area that Roger doesn't actually hurt you with, being the lefty and playing with the spin he does. So it's great to see the matchup that lends for a rivalry that might continue for a long time.

Q. Seemed to say pretty much the same thing. He said it might be really a left -- or are there a couple other elements that Nadal has?

ANDRE AGASSI: Well, Nadal -- you've got to look at it -- you've got to look at the facts. I mean, Nadal is one of the fastest guys out there, one of the strongest guys out there. The fact that he's a lefty does pose the one possible possibility. I mean, if he's right-handed, Roger is winning that 10 out of 10 times because it's just hard to get that ball to Roger because he can move so well and hurt you in so many ways, you know.

But the left -- Nadal can hit the inside out forehand. If Roger doesn't do something with that, the next ball is way up to the backhand. Then when he slices it, he's slicing it to a guy who has a lot of wrist on his forehand, I mean, he can handle that. I hit that same shot to Roger, he slices it real short to my backhand. I've got to get in with two hands, dig it out, and hope I hit it in a certain spot or else he's going to hurt me with it.

But Nadal can get it over there and whip it any direction, so it's a matchup issue. I mean, that's what gives him the look at Roger so many times, you know. But I just don't believe there's anybody's out there that can put up the numbers Roger has put up over the last two and a half, three years.
http://www.noticias.info/asp/aspComunicados.asp?nid=153813&src=0

RogiFan88
03-12-2006, 01:48 AM
Hmm... interesting what Marat says about Rafa -- I recall when he lost in Barcelona last year, they asked him about Rafa and he said sth like: "So Nadal is great, so what?". Wait til he actually plays Rafa one of these days... ;)

ChloeLove
03-12-2006, 03:17 AM
I would LOVE to see Rafa and Safin play, I don't care who wins...no actually I lie, I love Safin, but Rafa has to win:) I like those articles...good articles.

Can't wait until Indian Wells starts! I have a feeling Rafa will do really well. It's a tough field, but Rafa is great!

Björki
03-12-2006, 09:58 AM
todays OOP

Stadium 1 start 11:00 AM
J Hernych (CZE) vs (2)R Nadal (ESP)

VAMOS :bounce:

mallorn
03-12-2006, 05:00 PM
From SignOnSanDiego.com:
Despite his 3-1 career edge, Nadal says Federer betterer

By Jerry Magee
UNION-TRIBUNE STAFF WRITER
March 12, 2006

INDIAN WELLS – Everything Rafael Nadal says in English (which is not a lot) winds up as a question, no?

Yes. Some samples:

“Today I am the No. 2, no?

“I like a lot to play always. If you are winning, you have a good time, no?

“Improving is good for the tennis, no?”

What is good for the tennis is Nadal's presence in it. With the muscular 19-year-old from Spain positioning himself to challenge Roger Federer for supremacy, the men's game has its first potential rivalry since Pete Sampras and Andre Agassi were around together.

At a Pacific Life Open beset by rain, cold and high winds, the possibility of a Nadal-Federer final is the one encouraging factor near the close of what has been a trying first week for the tournament. The players' meeting last week in the final of the Dubai Duty Free Open had the stamp of a classic, with Nadal winning 2-6, 6-4, 6-4 and enlarging his career advantage over Federer to 3-1.

Meantime, not much of consequence had a chance of happening here yesterday because of the weather. James Blake had a high school student, Sam Querrey of Thousand Oaks, outplay him through one set before he gathered himself for a 1-6, 6-1, 6-3 victory. Elena Dementieva also was extended by a rock-steady 19-year-old from Belarus, Anastasiya Yakimova, but the Russian woman came through 6-4, 3-6, 6-3.

Other than that, the weather was the winner. After a brief rain delay early in the program, play was stopped for a second time late in the afternoon. Rain continuing to fall, at about 7 p.m., all the scheduled matches were put off except the continuation of a Rainer Schuettler-Boris Pashanski match and one involving Andy Roddick, who was scheduled to engage his conqueror at the 2005 French Open, Jose Acasuso of Argentina.

At 8:02 came an announcement that the Roddick match was being suspended. At 8:04 this announcement was countermanded: Roddick still was on. At 8:52, the rain having stopped and the court having breen dried, came an announcement that the Roddick match would not be offered after all. The player was understood to have left the premises.

One person who does not view Nadal as a threat to supplant Federer as the No. 1 player on the ATP Tour is Nadal himself. No, he said – that word again – there is no rivalry.

“I am young player,” he said. “He an unbelievable player, for now and one of the best for history.”

Nadal was reminded of his 3-1 advantage over the Swiss star.

“The important thing is he is better than me,” said Nadal.

Nadal's judgment aside, it arguably was a measure of how closely he is pressing Federer that he should have been able to outplay him at Dubai in only his third tournament after being idled for 14 weeks by an injury to his left foot.

“Was another one for me, no?” said Nadal.

He won after Federer played at the very top of his game in the first set. “I think it's hard to keep it up, to play really, really aggressively, like I did in the first set,” said Federer. “I've got to find a way where I don't overdo it. It was even all the way, but he won the crucial points at the end and that was a pity, but I was still pleased by the way I played.”

Federer's judgment of Nadal: “He's just a good player, simple as that. But I enjoy the challenge with him. He's a terrific scrambler and he brings something else to the game as a great left-hander. We don't have many of those.”

His left-handedness is responsible for the threat Nadal can mount to Federer, in Andre Agassi's thinking. “Nadal can hit the one shot that everybody wishes they could hit to Roger, and that's getting the ball up and to his backhand,” Agassi said. “That's no brain surgery. Nobody likes it up there. But it's unfortunately the only area where Roger can't hurt you. So it's great to see the matchup that lends to a rivalry that might continue for a long time.”

Marat Safin echoed Agassi's point – that Nadal being left-handed is an advantage to him when he opposes Federer.

“If he wasn't a lefty, Federer would beat him 10 times out of 10,” said the Russian. “Not many players on the tour are lefty, so every time you play against a lefty, it's completely different, with opposite spin. Also, he (Nadal) is very fast and he's a big fighter. The whole combination.”

To Lleyton Hewitt, Federer is a different player at the Grand Slams than he is at Dubai or even here. “When Roger has played in big matches in big tournaments, he hasn't put too many feet wrong,” noted the Australian. “Whether Roger is a bit more vulnerable, we'll wait and see. But he's still the man to beat.”
http://www.signonsandiego.com/sports/20060312-9999-1s12tennis.html

http://www.cosgan.de/images/smilie/musik/k015.gif

VAMOS RAFA!

http://www.cosgan.de/images/smilie/musik/k015.gif

Jennay
03-12-2006, 07:42 PM
Good luck at IW, Rafa!! :hug: :banana:

Björki
03-12-2006, 07:48 PM
Rafa leads *4-3

vamos

MariaV
03-12-2006, 08:46 PM
Rafa won 6-4 6-4!!!!!!!! WE LOVE THE KID WE LOVE THE KID!!!!!!!!!! :woohoo: :banana: :yippee: :dance: :bounce: :bigclap:
Next up mardy Fish. Shouldn't be too hard. *touching the wood*

Björki
03-12-2006, 09:13 PM
well done Rafa :clap2:

mallorn
03-12-2006, 09:16 PM
:dance: :dance: :dance:

Well done, Rafi! :D

The conditions were very difficult at times and he was clearly bothered by the wind, but he won the points that mattered!

I hope it's not so windy during his second match and he manages to play better, because Mardy will have the crowd support.

http://www.cosgan.de/images/smilie/musik/k015.gif

VAMOS RAFA in the next round!

http://www.cosgan.de/images/smilie/musik/k015.gif

mallorn
03-12-2006, 09:22 PM
Check out Susan and Lopaka's blog, Susan went to Rafa's press conference and wrote a report.

http://iw2006.blogspot.com/

NaDALiTa
03-12-2006, 10:13 PM
yeahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh hhhhhhhhhhhh he won

i hope he played well cause here they showed us Blake's yesterday match during Rafa's game :sad:

16681
03-12-2006, 10:40 PM
Congrats to Rafa :) And Vamos Rafa for the next Round ;)

Derek1206
03-13-2006, 12:32 AM
Good job Rafa! :D Good luck in the next round! :yeah:

veyonce
03-13-2006, 02:06 AM
Bangkok Post
13 March 2006

Nadal wins windy tennis opener

Indian Wells, California (dpa) - A relieved Rafael Nadal defied swirling desert winds Sunday to begin his campaign at the $5.29- million Indian Wells Masters 6-4, 6-4 over Czech Jan Hernych.

"It was unbelievable, very difficult to play like this," said the swashbuckling Spaniard, ranked second in the world behind Roger Federer.

"The wind swings. It's very difficult to play like this. But the first match always is very difficult, and with the wind, even more difficult. I won, and that's important."

The 19-year-old French Open champion was playing for the first time since winning the Dubai title last weekend over Federer, his third in the last four against the world-beating Swiss.

Nadal stands 13-2 in finals, winning his last 10 with his eyes now on the desert prize. The Spaniard is playing only his third tournament since injuring his foot during his title run in October in Madrid. He had feared that the injury could endanger his career.

The seed was untroubled against 87th-ranked Hernych, who now stands 2-7 this season.

Spanish compatriot David Ferrer, seeded 10th, became a victim as he fell to Philipp Kohlschreiber 6-2, 6-2. Tommy Robredo earned a win for Spain over Dane Kenneth Carlsen 6-1, 6-3.

American Mardy Fish continued a comeback from wrist surgery, ousting Italian Filippo Volandri 6-3, 6-2

Finn Jarkko Nieminen lined up a third-round match against Kohlschreiber with his 6-4, 6-4 victory against Germany's Florian Mayer.

In a first-round match that took three days to complete due to rain Friday and Saturday, German Rainer Schuettler finally overcame Serb Boris Pashanski 7-6 (7-4), 7-5.

On the women's side, top seed Justine Henin-Hardenne won her opener after a bye, reaching the third round over Tsvetana Pironkova of Bulgaria 6-2, 6-2.

Talented eighth seed Ana Ivanovic of Serbia-Montenegro dispatched Severine Bremond of 6-3, 6-2.

Russians Anna Chakvetadze and Maria Kirilenko both advanced while Indian Sania Mirza, playing for the first time in Indian Hills, defeated American Bethany Mattek 6-2, 3-6, 7-5.

veyonce
03-13-2006, 02:28 AM
Nadal through, Murray falls in Indian Wells
Mon Mar 13, 2006 1:43 AM GMT

By Matthew Cronin

INDIAN WELLS, March 12 (Reuters) - Spanish second seed Rafael Nadal continued his winning streak on Sunday, racing past Jan Hernych 6-4 6-4 to reach the third round of the Pacific Life Open.

The 19-year-old, who beat world number one Roger Federer to win the title in Dubai in his last tournament, struggled with the wind but was too consistent for his opponent on the day.

Britain's great teenage hope fell, however, Andy Murray losing 6-1 3-6 6-3 to fifth seed Nikolay Davydenko of Russia.

In women's action, comeback queen and former world number one Martina Hingis beat Austria's Sybille Bammer 6-0 6-3.

"You pretty much get through, get it done," said Hingis, who faces second seed Lindsay Davenport next. Davenport beat Laura Granville 6-4 6-0.

Top seed Justine Henin-Hardenne of Belgium also advanced, making quick work of Tszvetana Pironkova 6-2 6-2, while Serbia's number eight seed Ana Ivanovic beat Severine Bremond 6-3 6-2.

WINDY CONDITIONS

Nadal struggled with the windy Indian Wells conditions, but still managed to be more consistent.

"It is very difficult to play like this," the Spaniard said. "It didn't feel very good. But I won and that's the most important thing."

After winning the title in San Jose last month with back-to-back wins over Andy Roddick and Lleyton Hewitt, the 18-year-old Murray lost in the quarter-finals of Memphis, the first round of Las Vegas and now in the second round of Indian Wells.

He was still pleased with his effort, though.

"I didn't play (my) best but I gave 100 percent," the Scottish baseliner said. "I'm not going to play my best every week because I'm too young. I fought hard and he didn't make too many mistakes.

"He has some of the best groundstrokes in the game. He doesn't give away any cheap points."

In other action, 17th seed Tommy Robredo made quick work of Kenneth Carlsen 6-1 6-3, but Germany's Philipp Kohlschreiber upset 10th seed David Ferrer of Spain 6-2 6-2.

----

Eurosport
12 March 2006
Nadal into third round

Second seed Rafael Nadal progressed into the third round of the Indian Wells Masters with a 6-4 6-4 win over Jan Hernych of the Czech Republic. Nadal, who beat Roger Federer last week to claim his first title of the season in Dubai, was too consistent for the 26-year-old from Prague.

Nadal broke the Czech to start off the meeting, and waited until the second to last game of the match to break him again. He then held serve to seal the victory with a leaping fist pump.

"The first match always is very difficult to play good. The wind is very, very difficult," said Nadal. "I won and that's important. That's the most important thing."

Nadal will next face American wild card Mardy Fish, who cruised to a 6-3, 6-2 victory over No. 31 seed Filippo Volandri.

Fish reached the fourth round of the 2004 Indian Wells Masters, falling to eventual champion Roger Federer. Since reaching a career high No. 17 in the ATP Rankings following that performance, Fish has undergone two operations for a left wrist injury that has dropped him to his current position of No. 294.

The No. 4 and No. 5 seeds, Nikolay Davydenko and David Nalbandian, also made winning starts in the desert, taking out young Brit Andy Murray and American qualifier Justin Gimelstob, respectively. Spaniard Tommy Robredo advanced, while compatriot David Ferrer, the No. 10 seed, bowed out to Philipp Kohlschreiber.

Also on Sunday, Boris Pashanski and Rainer Schuettler finally completed their first-round match, which began Friday night on Center Court. Schuettler closed out the win 7-6(4), 7-5 and will meet two-time Indian Wells champion Lleyton Hewitt, the No. 9 seed, in the second round.

Meanwhile, Paul-Henri Mathieu benefitted from the rain delay, coming from down a set and a break following Saturday's action to complete the 2-6, 6-4, 6-1 win over Italian Andreas Seppi. In the remaining two first-round ties, Belgians Kristof Vliegen and Xavier Malisse turned in three-set victories.

Björki
03-13-2006, 06:45 AM
Monday OOP
Stadium 3 start 10:00 AM

K Vliegen (BEL) vs (20)S Grosjean (FRA)
N Kiefer (GER) vs P Mathieu (FRA)
Nadal/Youzhny vs (7)Erlich/Ram

rosespower
03-13-2006, 10:21 AM
well done rafa!

Jogg
03-13-2006, 08:43 PM
:bounce: Well done Rafa :bigclap:

mallorn
03-14-2006, 12:04 AM
Rafa and Misha won their match against the no 7 seeds Erlich and Ram 3-6, 6-4, 10-7. Well done boys! :woohoo:

lilfairyprincess
03-14-2006, 12:20 AM
vamos rafa and misha :bounce:

congratties!!! :hug: ...now for the singles 2moro.........

veyonce
03-14-2006, 01:40 AM
Post-match transcript of the press conference held on 12 March 2006:

PACIFIC LIFE OPEN
INDIAN WELLS, CALIFORNIA
March 12, 2006
R.Nadal/J.Hernych
6-4, 6-4

RAFAEL NADAL

Rafael Nadal: Hello.

The Moderator: Questions, please.

Q. Can you win this tournament playing like that?

Rafael Nadal: Playing like that? Like today?

Q. Yeah, like you just played.

Rafael Nadal: No.

Q. How much better do you got a be?

Rafael Nadal: A lot of -- a lot.

Q. It was a bit windy out today. Did the conditions affect the level of play?

Rafael Nadal: What?

Q. It looked quite windy. Was it tough?

Rafael Nadal: Yeah, unbelievable, very difficult to play like this, no? It's windy, and the windy is not go to the right, to the left, like this, in front. The wind go like this (swing to left) and it's very difficult to play like this. It's not easy and I -- I don't feel good.

The first match always is very difficult, play good. And is you -- and if you're at -- the wind is very, very difficult.

You know what? I won and that's important. That's the most important thing. The first match is always the most important thing, is not play good, play good, play bad. It's the second important -- most important, to win. Because if you win the first two matches, after I know from experience, you won the first two matches, after you're gonna play better for sure, no?

Q. Is there anything you can do, like string your rackets a bit tighter or anything like that on a day like today to give you more control or --

Rafael Nadal: Oh, no, no. No changes. All the same.

Q. Rafael, you've beaten Roger three or four times that you've played. Do you consider that you have a legitimate rivalry now?

Rafael Nadal: I say always the same. I think he is -- he's the best now. He's the best player in the world, one of the best in history, and I think I need -- I need to improve a lot of things for try to -- you know...

Q. Do you think you have a little bit of a mental edge against him?

Rafael Nadal: I don't know. I don't like speak about -- about what's better like -- (In Spanish)

The Moderator: (Translating) I don't like to compare.

Q. What things would you like to improve upon? You said you'd like to improve. Your strokes or something?

Rafael Nadal: For sure I need to improve a little bit more the serve. I am improving this year like maybe -- I been serving well, but I improve a lot of things. I need to improve a little bit more, the winner, the forehand winner and I think the ball, like the slice. But, you know, everything is important always improve every day, practicing with lot of humble and trying 100 percent in every match you know.

Q. Rafael, with the injury on your foot from last year, when you go on court now, do you think about it at all or it's not bothering you anymore?

Rafael Nadal: The first match is, you might say, a little bit, no? But now, no. I play very good week last week in Dubai, so I don't have pain. I feel good and I don't think about anything.

Q. Do you still need to keep giving it treatment or not anymore?

Rafael Nadal: No. I have of some exercises, but nothing special.

Q. Rafael, what are your expectations for Wimbledon this year?

Rafael Nadal: Sorry?

Q. Wimbledon, looking ahead.

Rafael Nadal: It's too far, no?

Q. It is. Okay.

Rafael Nadal: But for sure I always say the same, no? Wimbledon is one of the best tournaments in the world. I want to play good on grass. I like playing on grass, no? I like a lot, but I improve. And for this time I gonna play on Queens, and after that, I going to stay in London for one week before Wimbledon, no?

So I try my best preparation for try to play, try to improve the last one for play a good Wimbledon.

Q. How are the courts playing here? Are they favorable to your game the way that the ball bounces off these courts and sticking into the surface?

Rafael Nadal: Yes, is okay. Not like -- the court is okay. We can play good. The wind is difficult because we have wind and the ball, it's okay, no? It depend. ATP, we play all Master Series like that, with the same balls and, you know, we think with the weather, but the balls after three or four games stay like this, no, very big.

Credits to http://www.asapsports.com

Björki
03-14-2006, 06:46 AM
Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Not before 8:30 PM
(WC)M Fish (USA) vs (2)R Nadal (ESP)

Bertuska
03-14-2006, 10:49 AM
Bravo Rafa!! Well done!1
And good luck for the next round.

estrela
03-14-2006, 01:03 PM
Well done Rafa & Misha :woohoo: !!

16681
03-14-2006, 06:49 PM
Vamos to Rafa today :) He is really playing great tennis right now ;)

mallorn
03-14-2006, 08:13 PM
Vamos to Rafa today :) He is really playing great tennis right now ;)
Actually, I'm a little bit worried. He's got a blister on his left index finger and didn't serve very well in the doubles match according to Susan (see her blog (http://iw2006.blogspot.com/)). I hope he'll find some better form for his match against Mardy. *fingers crossed*

VAMOS RAFA!
http://www.cosgan.de/images/smilie/musik/k015.gifhttp://www.cosgan.de/images/smilie/musik/k015.gif

veyonce
03-15-2006, 03:13 AM
Just hope the thugs & blake fans won't be there...

Extracts from Safin, Roddick, Hewitt press conference held on 13 March 2006 when they were asked about Rafa.

Safin:-
Q. When you're hearing all the talk about Nadal, Federer, the big rival, are you saying, "If I wasn't injured, that could have been me? I beat him in Australia, then got injured."

MARAT SAFIN: I was supposed to be there a long time ago already, but he took my place (smiling). I think he deserves to be there. The fact he win the last two matches against Federer. He's solid player. We saw how many tournaments he won last year, I think around 10. He won already here, Dubai tournament, being injured for two, three months. He gave trouble to Federer. He's the one who can challenge him.

Now the clay court season is coming up. He's favorite to win French Open again. He's an upcoming star. Of course, all the Spanish, they are afraid of him. The rest of the world is also respect him a lot. I mean, the way he's playing, of course he's not impressive technique, with all the respect, but the guy is fighting. The guy is running around and hitting the forehands like crazy. He improved his serve. He knows how to play. Very ambitious. Nothing to lose. Everybody's talking about him. Everybody gives him respect. Everybody who is coming on the court is afraid to beat him.

Roddick:-
Q. Andre and Roger talked about Nadal, that his biggest advantage is being a lefty. You handled this lefty pretty well. Is it an advantage?

ANDY RODDICK: No, I think it's definitely an advantage, especially for him. He can get that heavy forehand and really roll it cross-court. It's a lot more effective than someone hitting a two-handed backhand. You haven't seen a lot of lefties who play that style of game. Normally the lefties are the big-serving guys that haven't really played too much like Nadal.

You know, I think it is an advantage.

Hewitt:-
Q. What is your definition of a rivalry? Do Federer and Nadal have one yet?

LLEYTON HEWITT: Well, I'm not sure. I guess they've probably still got, you know, maybe a little bit longer to go before they have a rivalry, you know, such as whether it was McEnroe/Borg, McEnroe/Connors, Sampras/Agassi, you know, these kind of guys. Yeah, purely because Rafael has only been on the tour for a couple of years. But if he keeps going the way he's going, and obviously Roger continues his form that he's had the last three or four years, yeah, there's a good chance.

But you never know. You know, there's a handful of us I guess just behind at the moment. If you keep knocking on the door, if there's a group of five guys, is that a rivalry? I don't know.

Q. You're saying they haven't played enough for it to be a rivalry?

LLEYTON HEWITT: No, not right at the moment, I wouldn't say.

Q. Haven't played enough big matches?

LLEYTON HEWITT: Yeah, not quite. You can't quite put them in the same bracket as a Sampras and Agassi rivalry. You know, played, I don't know, over 40 or so times, I guess. It's hard to say that just yet. They're obviously No. 1 and 2. It was only probably a year and a half ago everybody was trying to talk a Federer/Roddick rivalry. Where has Andy gone? Has he disappeared? I don't know.

I think it's hard to say. They're the only two guys out there at the moment. Andy is still No. 3 in the world. Nalbandian. There's a lot of guys out there. But if they keep going obviously the way they're going, maybe it will turn into that.

Q. Andy seems to be a distant third in that rivalry.

LLEYTON HEWITT: Yeah, I guess a little bit. In terms of ranking, maybe. I don't know. You know, I know Andy struggled the last couple weeks, the last couple months maybe.

But, still, on grass, yeah, at the US Open I think Andy, that's when he probably plays his best tennis. So, you know, I'd look for Queen's through to the US Open, he's probably going to have a pretty good stint.

Nadal, yeah, he's going to be -- we all know on clay he's going to be extremely tough every tournament. On grass at Wimbledon, I don't know if it's quite a rivalry against Rog just yet on grass (smiling).

veyonce
03-15-2006, 03:27 AM
Order of Play
Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Stadium 1 start 11:00 AM
(10)D Safina (RUS) vs (19)M Hingis (SUI)
I Andreev (RUS) vs (3)A Roddick (USA)
(1)R Federer (SUI) vs (16)R Gasquet (FRA)
X Malisse (BEL) or (20)S Grosjean (FRA) vs (WC)M Fish (USA) or (2)R
Nadal (ESP)
Not before 7:00 PM
(7)A Groenefeld (GER) vs (21)S Peer (ISR) or (3)M Sharapova (RUS)
(26)T Haas (GER) vs J Blake (USA)


Stadium 2 start 11:00 AM
(25)M Baghdatis (CYP) vs (23)T Berdych (CZE)
D Nalbandian (ARG) vs P Srichaphan (THA)
P Mathieu (FRA) or M Ancic (CRO) vs I Ljubicic (CRO)
J Nieminen (FIN) vs M Safin (RUS)
(1)Bryan/Bryan vs Berdych/Levinsky
Gasquet/Grosjean vs Nadal/Youzhny


Stadium 3 start 10:00 AM
Knowle/Melzer vs (8)Cermak/Friedl
Not before 11:00 AM
(1)Raymond/Stosur vs (8)Li/Sun
Daniilidou/Medina Garrigues vs Mirza/Sugiyama
(WC)Goldstein/Thomas vs (3)Knowles/Nestor
(5)Damm/Paes vs Andreev/Davydenko


Court 4 start 10:00 AM
Fyrstenberg/Matkowski vs Aspelin/Perry
(6)Santoro/Zimonjic vs Etlis/Gaudio
(WC)Gimelstob/Huss vs Acasuso/Prietoor(2)Bjorkman/Mirnyi
Peer/Stewart vs (3)Ruano Pascual/Shaughnessy

Björki
03-15-2006, 06:30 AM
Rafa leads 6-1 :yeah:

16681
03-15-2006, 07:14 AM
Rafa won 6-1 and 6-4 over Mardy Fish ;) :worship:

Rafa = Fed Killa
03-15-2006, 07:15 AM
Vs. Grosjean in the next match.

Vamos Rafa!

mallorn
03-15-2006, 07:36 AM
Well done Rafa! :woohoo:
Brilliant first set! :worship:
What's with the BP conversions though, eh? :o ;)

Björki
03-15-2006, 07:38 AM
Rafa :yeah:

geni
03-15-2006, 07:45 AM
Well done Rafa !
good luck for the next round !

veyonce
03-15-2006, 12:00 PM
He's going to face Grosjean twice tomorrow!!

NaDALiTa
03-15-2006, 12:42 PM
yeah great job Rafa ........you'll have to play hard against Grosjean, he plays at home!!!

MariaV
03-15-2006, 02:45 PM
Oh, should we have the interview transcripts here? Here the latest. :D

March 14, 2006

R. NADAL/M. Fish
6-1, 6-4

An interview with:
RAFAEL NADAL

THE MODERATOR: Questions for Rafael.

Q. If you were a soccer player, you wouldn't be playing this late. It appears that it's not bothering you?
RAFAEL NADAL: (Translated from Spanish) Sometimes you play late matches, and that's just fine. That's the way it is.

Q. Do you enjoy the conditions late at night?
RAFAEL NADAL: I like play at night. I play lot of times at night. In Dubai last week, I play every time. Just one match on day. I am used to play at night.

Q. Here when you play at night, the conditions are slower. Have you found the conditions slower?
RAFAEL NADAL: Maybe is a little bit slower the court in the night. But it's okay. I feel good.

Q. Nothing significant?
RAFAEL NADAL: For me, no.

Q. Tony is not here this week.
RAFAEL NADAL: No.

Q. There's a lot of tournaments where he doesn't travel with you in a season?
RAFAEL NADAL: No, no, not too much. Sometimes when I have large travels, a lot of days out, he have three kids, young kids, very young, so he want to stay at home. He going to be in Miami.

Q. Who coaches you when he is not with you? Who is your coach here?
RAFAEL NADAL: Yeah, it change a lot of times. Sometimes one from Mallorca. Sometimes I travel with Francis Roig. Here is Francis Roig.

Q. Considering how good you are on the clay courts, coming up to the hard court season, are you looking ahead to try to peak for the clay events or are you completely focused on cement and doing the job here?

RAFAEL NADAL: No, I am completely focused on hard courts. I like play on these courts. Last year I won two Masters Series on hard courts. I won in China. I play the final in Miami.
I need improve, but I think I have chance for play good matches here and good tournaments. Last week I won in Dubai, the same court. So I think if I am playing good, I can play on this surface at good level, no?

Q. What about your next match against Grosjean? Do you think he can be dangerous with his forehand?
RAFAEL NADAL: For sure. Grosjean is one of the best players in the world. I will have a difficult match. For sure I need play my best for try win this match. I think going to be a difficult match, nice match, no? I play with him one time before. I know he is very tough. Going to be a difficult match.

Q. How did you feel you played tonight and were you expecting a tougher match tonight?
RAFAEL NADAL: I am always prepared for a difficult match because I know every time every match is different, every match is difficult. But I think I am playing very well - the first set especially, very aggressive, a little bit misses.
So the second set I am playing good, too, but I can't do the break. I have a lot of chances in every game for breakpoint. When I have the breakpoint, every time my return go very short, so I can't do the break. But finally I can in the 5-4. That's the most important thing, no?

Q. There's a lot of players your age who have had success in this tournament. Can you talk about the other players, Berdych, Gasquet.
RAFAEL NADAL: Monfils.

Q. Monfils lost with Ljubicic.
RAFAEL NADAL: Oh, Ljubicic.

Q. Baghdatis. What is your thought about all the young players coming up? Federer thought it was like when he, Hewitt, Roddick.
RAFAEL NADAL: Not Federer, Roddick, Hewitt. Federer, Roddick, Hewitt, Ferrero, Nalbandian, Coria. Is a new generation. Now we have very good players. The new generation and the other generation. So is a new generation and we have a good level now in the tour. We have this new generation and the other one. That's a tough confrontation. In the next years, I think some players like this going to be in the top 10.

Q. Are you surprised that Ferrero has been struggling the way he has?
RAFAEL NADAL: You know, every match is difficult. But he is a good player. Yeah, surprised a little bit the score. But I know every match is very difficult and I know I can lose today, I can lose yesterday, I can lose tomorrow. Ferrero can lose every day. Every player can lose every match because the level sometimes is very similar all players, no?

Q. Did you watching Agassi?
RAFAEL NADAL: Yesterday, yes.

Q. What were your feelings?
RAFAEL NADAL: I think he has a good chance in the first set, like 5-4, 40-15. Haas is a really good player. He's playing very good this year. He can't convert this chance. After, Haas play good and Agassi is going down a little bit, no? But Agassi is an unbelievable player. He has 35 years old. That's unbelievable.

Q. When you were growing up, do you remember a particular image or feeling about Agassi or were you more focused on the European players?

RAFAEL NADAL: Yes, I remember especially the confrontations Agassi/Sampras. I remember very good, no?

FastScripts by ASAP Sports

mallorn
03-15-2006, 02:54 PM
Thanks, Maria! :hug:

Clara Bow
03-15-2006, 07:58 PM
Well, I am going to be out of pocket from MTF for the rest of the tourney with stuff going on for us here in Austin, but just want to say a big Vamos! to Rafa for the rest of IW. :D

nadalfan1
03-16-2006, 02:36 AM
HE WON! Vamos! ^ 6-4 6-2 against S. Grosjean

16681
03-16-2006, 02:41 AM
HE WON! Vamos! ^ 6-4 6-2 against S. Grosjean
Vamos Rafa :worship: He is playing really well ;) However, I did see a poster in GM that mentioned that at one point Rafa rolled over on his ankle so I hope that won't be a problem in the future :eek:

veyonce
03-16-2006, 03:39 AM
Federer cruises past Gasquet
Fox Sports
From Rebecca Bryan in Indian Wells, California
March 16, 2006

TOP seed and two-time defending champion Roger Federer is through to the fourth round of the ATP Tour Masters Series in Indian Wells, California.

The world No.1, who had an uncharacteristically slow start before subduing Belgian Olivier Rochus in three sets yesterday, was back to his dominant self in a 6-3 6-4 victory over talented young Frenchman Richard Gasquet – one of only four men to beat Federer last year.

"From the start, it was a good match today," Federer said. "Never in doubt on the serve. I played a little better from the baseline. All in all, it was very good."

Federer next faces sixth-seeded Ivan Ljubicic, who beat Mario Ancic – his teammate in Croatia's Davis Cup triumph last year – 6-3, 6-4.

Thailand's Paradorn Srichaphan meanwhile recorded a 6-7 (5-7), 6-3, 6-2 upset of No.4-seeded Argentine David Nalbandian.

He next faces Finland's Jarkko Nieminen, who beat former world No.1 Marat Safin of Russia 6-4, 6-3.

Rafael Nadal, who upset Federer in the final at Dubai the week before Indian Wells, also survived a scary moment to beat Sebastien Grosjean of France 6-4, 6-2.

Nadal led 5-3 in the opening set when he rolled his right ankle. He immediately called for the trainers to tape it up, then continued without a hitch.

The world No.2 and second seed, who is playing in just his third tournament this season after injuring his left foot in a title run at Madrid last year, withdrew from the doubles as a precaution.

But he said he hoped he'd be ready for a quarter-final clash with surprise Australian Open finalist Marcos Baghdatis of Cyprus, who beat Czech Tomas Berdych 6-4, 6-1.

Agence France-Presse

veyonce
03-16-2006, 04:23 AM
An interview with: RAFAEL NADAL

R. NADAL /S. Grosjean
6-4, 6-2

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. You just pulled out of doubles. How is the foot? How is the ankle?

RAFAEL NADAL: I don't know yet exactly, but I think it's okay. When I have the pain, I have pain because I twisted my ankle.

Q. Did you pull out of doubles because you're hurting now?

RAFAEL NADAL: Yes.

Q. Do you think you'll be okay for the singles?

RAFAEL NADAL: I hope. I hope yes. But is more for precaution. You don't know tomorrow what's happen, no? But now I am happy because I don't feel too much pain, no? But I can finish the match, so that's a good sign.

Q. Did you get any treatment after the match?

RAFAEL NADAL: Yeah, yeah. But I have ice, and I looked the physios, the doctors, my physio. He looks. He thinks I will be okay for after tomorrow.

Q. Did you feel it at all after you got it taped? Did you feel the pain after you got it taped on court?

RAFAEL NADAL: Yes, a little bit.

Q. But not enough to affect you?

RAFAEL NADAL: No, no for retire. Some moments I don't feel hundred percent good, so...

But I can finish, so that's good. If I have anything important, I going to stop because I going to feel a lot of pain. But I can finish. I finish good. Now I feel good. I don't have too much pain, so that's important.

Q. Do you feel you played well in the second set?

RAFAEL NADAL: I think I play well all match. I think. Do you think?

Q. Better than in the first two rounds?

RAFAEL NADAL: Yeah. Yesterday, the first set I play very good. Today maybe I think I play very, very good all match. But in the 5-2, I lost the game. I lost a little bit my concentration here. I think I play very good with my forehand. The backhand okay. I serve better today. I am happy with my game.

Q. What about the next match against Baghdatis?

RAFAEL NADAL: He's playing good. He's playing very good. He has a lot of confidence. He play the final on Australia. He is unbelievable comeback this year, no? It will be difficult. I will have a difficult match. I have a lot of motivation for the next match, no? Is an interesting match with one of the best players of the moment. I have a special motivation for this match. I am happy for stay in the quarterfinals. And I hope play good match. Will be a nice match, I think.

Q. What are you going to be doing tomorrow on your day off?

RAFAEL NADAL: I think tomorrow is good. Day off is good. I am in quarterfinal. I am playing maybe good. I am very happy for stay here. After three months and a half stop, I have unbelievable comeback: semifinal, final, now I am in quarterfinal. You never know. So I am very happy, no?

Q. During those times that you were injured, what were you doing? Did you get your driver's license? Were you able to do some of the things you weren't able to do last year because you were playing so much?

RAFAEL NADAL: Yes, yes, I have a lot of things. But when I was injury, I don't have a lot of time because I need practice, I need recuperation, I need a lot of physical practice. I watch a lot of videos of mine. So I have a lot of work, too, no? But I find a little bit time for the driver license and for something more, no?

And I English, I am looking better.

Q. How big a star are you back home in Spain?

RAFAEL NADAL: I don't know.

Q. Can you go out without being recognized by fans?

RAFAEL NADAL: Normal people recognize me. Especially in Mallorca, the people recognize me, but we are very quiet.

Q. They show respect?

RAFAEL NADAL: Yeah. But normal the people recognize me, but the people will be very nice with me always, so I am happy.

Q. Have you played Baghdatis before?

RAFAEL NADAL: No.

Q. Not on tour, not in Juniors?

RAFAEL NADAL: Not in Juniors, nothing, no.

Q. What impressed you with his game when you saw him in Australia?

RAFAEL NADAL: He play very good tournament. For sure, if you play the final of Grand Slam, you need play unbelievable tournament. So he's a young player, one year more than me just, so he have very good chance for stay in the top 10 this year for sure because he has 700 points in Australia. Now he has 125 more and a good chance for tomorrow. I hope not, but...

estrela
03-16-2006, 02:54 PM
thanx for the interview :)

I hope that his foot won't be a problem

NaDALiTa
03-16-2006, 06:04 PM
i can lend you my ankle Rafa .....if you want..... :) :yeah:

*finger crossed* i hope everything will be OK

16681
03-16-2006, 07:44 PM
Poor Rafa :sad: He just keeps getting hurt :rolleyes: And it always happens when he is playing so well! I really hope that the ankle doesn't bother him in the Singles Match. I think he was very wise to withdraw from the Doubles Match. Get well in a hurry Rafa ;)

mallorn
03-16-2006, 09:15 PM
I know he finished the match with apparently no problems but I'm still worried. I guess I'll stop worring when I see him step on the court for his QF match and move without problems. :(

From The Desert Sun:

Top men roll into quarters

INDIAN WELLS - The red flag was raised when Rafael Nadal needed an injury timeout to have his right ankle taped during his match against Sebastien Grosjean.

The injury didn't stop Nadal as he stormed to a 6-4, 6-2 victory over the Frenchman to advance to the quarterfinals of the Pacific Life Open on Wednesday.

However, Nadal had to withdraw from the doubles immediately after the match.

"Is more for precaution," Nadal said. "You don't know tomorrow what's happen, no? But now I am happy because I don't feel too much pain. But I can finish the match, so that's a good sign."

Nadal will have today off before he takes on Marcos Baghdatis, the star from Cypress who took the tennis world by storm with his appearance in the Australian Open finals. Nadal said he's looking forward to playing the young, rising star.

"I have a lot of motivation for the next match," Nadal said. "Is an interesting match with one of the best players of the moment. I have a special motivation for this match. I am happy for stay in the quarterfinals, and I hope to play a good match."

Nadal is still on track for a potential final appearance against No. 1 Roger Federer, who defeated Richard Gasquet 6-3, 6-4 on Wednesday.

It was an easier match for Federer, who was pushed to three sets on Tuesday against Olivier Rochus.

Federer will take on a familiar opponent in Ivan Ljubicic in today's 12:30 p.m. quarterfinal. Federer has won the last five matches against Ljubicic. Federer leads the series 8-3 against Ljubicic, including the last five matches.

Ljubicic has played Federer close, but hasn't been able to close the deal.

"I think (I played) better on key occasions," Federer said. "I have a feeling he definitely changed his game a little bit, plays even more patiently. His forehand definitely improved. I think he's more confident now overall. I think it's a very tough, tough match for me to play against him."

Federer's victory over Gasquet knocked out one of the four players who beat him last year. Another one, Marat Safin, also fell on Wednesday to Jarkko Nieminen 6-4, 6-3.

Safin, who won the Australian Open in 2005, had been coming back from a knee injury that knocked him out for seven months.

Safin had a 4-2 lead in the first set, but a bad call on break point snowballed into a loss.

"I lost a little bit of my game on that 4-2, then the trouble started," Safin said. "A couple of bad calls and the match was gone.

"I lost the momentum. I start to be scared a little bit because I really wanted to win and I knew I was 4-2 up, playing good tennis. All of a sudden everything just changed. I was scared a little bit to play more aggressive. Started to be a little bit defensive."

Blake advances; Haas retires: James Blake was leading 6-3, 3-0 over Tommy Haas late Wednesday, when Haas had to retire with food poisoning. That left Blake as the lone American remaining in the event.

"It's interesting, I hadn't thought about that," Blake said. "I guess I'll have to spell Andy this one time, since he's been doing it for years. I'll take the burden this time and I'm sure he'll take it back soon. He's one of the best players in the world and I'm sure he'll prove it for the rest of this year. For this one, it's good to see we have some depth in American tennis."
http://www.thedesertsun.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20060316/EVENTS10/603160317/1002/sports

khryss_20
03-17-2006, 03:13 AM
hei nadal fans....im new at this thread and i wanna say hi to everione...

ive been a nadal fan for quite some time now...i was watching his match against sebastian on tv yesterday and i was worried wen he called for a time out for his ankle...i hope his olryt....have any of you heard anything about tis matter???

i wish him all d best for tis tournament....hope to hear from u guys soon...

mallorn
03-17-2006, 12:52 PM
hei nadal fans....im new at this thread and i wanna say hi to everione...

ive been a nadal fan for quite some time now...i was watching his match against sebastian on tv yesterday and i was worried wen he called for a time out for his ankle...i hope his olryt....have any of you heard anything about tis matter???

i wish him all d best for tis tournament....hope to hear from u guys soon...
Hi khryss, welcome! :wavey:
We don't really know much about the ankle. In his post match conference he said it wasn't too bad, and later Susan of vr.com asked him about it and he said he hoped it was ok. From Susan and Lopaka's blog (http://iw2006.blogspot.com/):
After a while, Bob and I were getting ready to leave, and I did approach Rafa and ask about his ankle and he said it's okay, or so he hopes.

16681
03-17-2006, 06:22 PM
hei nadal fans....im new at this thread and i wanna say hi to everione...

ive been a nadal fan for quite some time now...i was watching his match against sebastian on tv yesterday and i was worried wen he called for a time out for his ankle...i hope his olryt....have any of you heard anything about tis matter???

i wish him all d best for tis tournament....hope to hear from u guys soon...
Welcome khryss :wavey: And I hope Rafa's ankle will be alright. I would hate to see him lose a Match because of a problem with his ankle :sad:

silver7
03-17-2006, 09:01 PM
I hope he will win today and that his ankle make no problems.Vamos Rafa

mallorn
03-17-2006, 09:21 PM
OK, now I'm really worried. This is what Susan posted on vr.com
Please do not be surprsed if Rafa pulls out, because of his ankle.

He did not sound very confident about it when I spoke with him last night. And he has not booked a practice court today.

Maybe they will test it and he'll be fine, but I'm doubtful about this. Lopy has the same impression, too.

I'll post more as soon as I hear it.
http://img460.imageshack.us/img460/8586/iconnervous1ex.gif (http://imageshack.us)

NaDALiTa
03-17-2006, 09:47 PM
:sad: :awww: :bigcry: :rain: :shrug: :sobbing: :tears: :crying2: :hysteric: whyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy

maty
03-18-2006, 12:53 AM
well he didn't pull out yet and his match is about to start,i really hope he's OK and that he'll be able to play,i'm so woried about him right now :wavey:

lilfairyprincess
03-18-2006, 01:06 AM
apparently (from tenhound in GM) rafa is just about to start practicing now (susan has just posted it on the vr.com site)

hopefully this means all is well with rafa!

veyonce
03-18-2006, 02:16 AM
I hope so too but I hate he'll face Blake in the semis!!!

khryss_20
03-18-2006, 04:39 AM
rafas looking good at d moment...won d frst set 7-5 and he broke d opening service game of marcos on d second set....

go nadal!!!!!

khryss_20
03-18-2006, 05:09 AM
wow...7-5 6-0...he made it seem so easy...mayb his ankle is not much of a problem at all....now its off to d semis against james blake....vamos rafa!!!!

lilfairyprincess
03-18-2006, 05:09 AM
rafa wins 7-5 6-0 :bounce:

vamos rafa!!!!! :hug:

16681
03-18-2006, 05:24 AM
I love Rafa ;) He looked and played wonderfully. He had on a bright orange shirt which really looked nice on him :)
I saw no signs of any ankle problem whatsoever. It was very difficult playing conditions because it was very, very,
windy :eek: Rafa's English is like his tennis game--it just keeps getting better and better :bigclap: It is a really joy to watch him play because he brings such passion into the game :worship: I wish all of you could have seen him tonight :angel: I want him to make it to the world's #1 player :bowdown:

veyonce
03-18-2006, 05:33 AM
Yes... Rafa was amazing!!! The first set was tight and Rafa gave Macros a doughnut in the 2nd set (ie. the chinese press started this phrasing)....

Sparko1030
03-18-2006, 06:35 AM
:bigclap: Congrats Rafa!!! Impressive win over Marcos!!! Now good luck in the semifinal. :hatoff:

khryss_20
03-18-2006, 07:16 AM
I love Rafa ;) He looked and played wonderfully. He had on a bright orange shirt which really looked nice on him :)
I saw no signs of any ankle problem whatsoever. It was very difficult playing conditions because it was very, very,
windy :eek: Rafa's English is like his tennis game--it just keeps getting better and better :bigclap: It is a really joy to watch him play because he brings such passion into the game :worship: I wish all of you could have seen him tonight :angel: I want him to make it to the world's #1 player :bowdown:

im so jealous...for some reason fox sports hir in australia only showed blakes match...i hope dey wud show rafas match later 2nyt....

same hir..i wanna see nadal being named as d #1 player in d world....im kinda over federer now...he has been number 1 for to0 long

Björki
03-18-2006, 07:56 AM
well done Rafa :bigclap:
good luck for the semi :bounce:

mallorn
03-18-2006, 07:57 AM
Great match by Rafa! :yeah: :dance:

I was so relieved that he didn't show any signs of the ankle sprain after all the drama of "will he or won't he" that we had yesterday! :lol:

http://www.cosgan.de/images/smilie/musik/k015.gif

VAMOS RAFA in the semi! You can do it!!!

http://www.cosgan.de/images/smilie/musik/k015.gif

mallorn
03-18-2006, 08:10 AM
From the official site:
Rafael Nadal won the last eight games of the match against Australian Open finalist Marcos Baghdatis to advance to the semifinals with a 7-5, 6-0 victory. Nadal was broken when serving for the first set at 5-3 and Baghdatis then held to level at 5-5.

But the Cypriot was unable to hang with Nadal after that as the Spaniard closed out the match to set up a chance to avenge his loss to James Blake at last year's US Open.

Looking ahead to the Blake semifinal, Nadal said: "It will be a very difficult match. He's playing very tough. I will have to play a very good match. I have a lot of motivation after losing to him last year (at the US Open). If I play well I know I will always have a chance to win."

Baghdatis, who slipped to 11-5 on the year, said he was simply outplayed in his first meeting with Nadal. "It was a good lesson for me to see how he plays and stuff. He has a great forehand, great backhand. He has every shot. He's a great athlete.

"I mean, physically he's amazing. It was a good lesson for me today. I think I know what to work on now more... next time I play him I will have maybe a tactic to play against him. That's all. That's a good experience for me today. I didn't play so bad. Like I said, he was too good for me today."
http://www.pacificlifeopen.com/en/news/2006/atp_friday2.asp

mallorn
03-18-2006, 08:29 AM
From LA Times:
Nadal May Pull Rank on Blake

Spaniard reaches Indian Wells semifinals against American, who cracks the top 10 with a victory over Andreev.

By Bill Dwyre, Times Staff Writer
March 18, 2006


Rafael Nadal, the only human living on the same tennis planet as Roger Federer, kept the dream alive for promoters and fans alike at the Pacific Life Open on Friday night.

The Spanish teenager, 19 until June 3, withstood a swirling wind on a barely-50-degree evening, as well as the pride of Cyprus, Marcos Baghdatis, in a 7-5, 6-0 victory that put him into today's semifinals against American James Blake.

If Nadal beats Blake, and the world's No. 1, Federer, gets past Paradorn Srichaphan of Thailand in their semifinal, Sunday's final will match Nadal and Federer for the second consecutive ATP Tour final. And, unlike just about any other person, Nadal not only has a chance to win, but he has a winning record against Federer, who won here the last two years. When Nadal won two weeks ago in the final at Dubai, it stretched his record against Federer to 3-1.

Nadal got all he could handle in the first set from Baghdatis, the relative newcomer who set the tennis world on its ear at the Australian Open by beating David Nalbandian, Ivan Ljubicic and Andy Roddick on the way to the final. There, he lost to Federer in four sets.

Baghdatis' run to the quarterfinals of this Tennis Masters Series at Indian Wells indicated that Australia was no fluke, as does his 6-5 record against top-10 players, four of those five losses being to Federer and the fifth to Nadal on Friday night.

He matched the lefty Nadal's heavy topspin shots and sharply angled baseline offerings until 5-6 of the first set, where Baghdatis hit long on the first set point and Nadal had the lead after 64 minutes. That seemed to take all the air out of the Cypriot, and despite saving three match points at 0-5 in the second set, Baghdatis was gone in 34 minutes.

"Nadal got confident in the second set, he wasn't missing a ball," Baghdatis said. "It was the first time I play against him. He has a good forehand, a good backhand, has every shot."

Nadal, looking forward, said, "Blake is playing tough, and has an unbelievable forehand. I'm going to have a very difficult match."

And looking back, to the U.S. Open last year, he recalled losing there to Blake.

"Maybe my worst tournament, maybe in the year," he said. "But against Blake, I played my best match in the U.S. Open."

Blake also has had an unbelievable run of late, starting off this season with an 18-4 record, including two titles, in Sydney and Las Vegas, and propelling himself into the top 10 for the first time in his career with Friday's quarterfinal win.

In that match, he beat the Russian who had upset Roddick on Thursday, Igor Andreev. The score was 6-1, 6-4, and although Blake was faster and more crisp in his shot-making, Andreev played, at times, like somebody who would have had trouble beating Andy Rooney, much less Andy Roddick.

He made 31 unforced errors and seemed to have a game that relied completely on a rocket forehand while the rest of his game resembled a pop gun.

Blake, the former All-American from Harvard, who was ranked No. 151 when he played this tournament a year ago, can move as high as No. 7 if he wins this tournament.

That would be amazing, because, in 2004, he broke his back in a freak practice-session accident and later had an illness that affected his vision and hearing and actually left him paralyzed on one side.

"I realize there is more to life than tennis," he said. "This is what I missed so much when I was having a down time, when I was on the couch, when I couldn't really walk without being dizzy. It's a lot of fun to be back."

Blake's ascent into the top 10 marked the first time three American men have been there since February 2000, when Andre Agassi was No. 1, Pete Sampras No. 3 and Todd Martin No. 10. Agassi will be ranked No. 9 and Roddick No. 4.

Srichaphan, who outlasted Jarkko Nieminen in a late-night marathon Thursday, 7-6 (3), 3-6, 7-5, will be the only unseeded player in the men's semifinals, with Federer No. 1, Nadal No. 2 and Blake No. 12.
http://www.latimes.com/sports/la-sp-tenside18mar18,1,2406393.story?coll=la-headlines-sports

mallorn
03-18-2006, 08:36 AM
From tennisreporters.net:

Nadal v. Blake in blockbuster semi

James in Top 10 for first time

By Matthew Cronin, TennisReporters.net

http://img238.imageshack.us/img238/743/nadalmtiw063008li.jpg (http://imageshack.us) http://img158.imageshack.us/img158/8157/blakeamsiw06bh3008ej.jpg (http://imageshack.us)
Mal Taam/MALTphoto Anne-Marie Stark

Rafael Nadal will clash with James Blake in the Indian Wells semi.

FROM THE PACIFIC LIFE OPEN IN INDIAN WELLS – Know this: Rafael Nadal wants to show James Blake a much better level than he showed him after his stunning loss to him at the '05 US Open. After smoking Cypriot Marcos Baghdatis 7-5, 6-0 in the quarters, on Friday, he'll have his shot.

Blake beat down Russia's Igor Andreev 6-1, 6-4.

While Baghdatis was quite flashy in the first set against Nadal, the Spaniard was far more consistent and his heavy, topspinned balls wore the AO finalist down physically and mentally. In the second set, Marcos threw a bag over his head and disappeared.

"Physically he's amazing," Baghdatis said. "It was a good lesson for me today. I think I know what to work on now more. I saw how he's playing, I now know his game, so next time I play him I will have maybe a tactic to play against him."

With his win over Andreev, the 26-year-old Blake is now guaranteed to move into the Top 10 for the first time. That's pretty heady stuff, even for a modest guy.

"It's pretty crazy," said Blake, who has won two titles this year. I was told about it this morning. Probably shouldn't have been. I told Patrick [McEnroe], you're not supposed to do that. It's like telling a guy that's throwing a no-hitter, you can't talk to him during the game. The first thing that came to my mind is now I get to take my shirt off at Saddle Brook. I made a deal with Kevin O'Connor who runs the tennis program there, I saw [Pete] Sampras come and practice there, [Marcelo] Rios come and practice. They'd be practicing with their shirt off. It gets pretty hot in Tampa. Then myself or Mardy Fish go try to practice. No, no, no, you're not allowed. Other administrators come over and say you got to keep your shirt on. 'How come they can? If you get to Top 10 in the world, then you're allowed to take your shirt off.' First practice back in Tampa, my shirt will be off. I'll be working on my tan."

Even though Nadal is nursing a sprained ankle and spent Thursday night with his foot propped up, he moved pretty well. His ball is very heavy and as the Bag Man says, he's amazing off both wings. But, Blake is terrific athlete as well and has a lot of shots at his disposal. But he'll have to be super consistent to win.

"It's going to have a very difficult match," Nadal said. "He's playing very tough, unbelievable forehand. So I will need to play my best. I lost against him at the US Open; my worst tournament maybe of the year. So I want to play good tomorrow."

Roger Federer will take on Paradorn Srichaphan in the other semifinal.
http://www.tennisreporters.net/commentary_nadal_031706.html

HybridTheory
03-18-2006, 10:54 AM
Go Rafa!!! :bounce:

estrela
03-18-2006, 12:16 PM
Well done Rafa :worship: :woohoo: !!

and good luck againt blake

MariaV
03-18-2006, 03:45 PM
Saw the qf vs Baghdatis and it was a relief to see no problem with the ankle. :D And absolutely great 2nd set, a doughnut Veyonce, lol, didn't they have a thread about why it was called a bagle and not a doughnut in the GM? :haha:
OK, what I really wanted to ask - he had taped both his forefinger and middle finger on his left hand. I wonder if there's a problem or is it just a precaution after last year's bad blister?
I wish him all the best luch against Blake!!!!!!! VAMOS RAFAEL!!!!!!! YOU CAN DO IT!!!!!!!!! :bigclap: :bounce: :yippee: :dance: :bigclap: :bounce: :yippee: :dance:

avocadoe
03-18-2006, 03:51 PM
an offering to Nadal fans:I'm a fed fan but appreciate Rafa's uniqueness and threat to roger. I'll always root for Roger but came up with a good Rafa name and want to be the first to post it, so here it is, "NADALOMGODDY"...said with awe and respect. Pretty good, no?

NaDALiTa
03-18-2006, 05:01 PM
yeahhhh good nickname !!! :yeah:


i have something to say about french commentators...they made me furious during Nadal's game, especially Julien Boutter an ex looser.......ooops player !!!!! I remember last year he was completely amazed by Rafa , and yesterday he said that he doesn"t like him because his game has never improved , he added that if he wants to reach Federer he has to PLAY TENNIS otherwise it will be impossible to come back. I really wonder why french people are so tough and rude with Rafa........... it's disgusting !!!!!

mallorn
03-18-2006, 05:03 PM
an offering to Nadal fans:I'm a fed fan but appreciate Rafa's uniqueness and threat to roger. I'll always root for Roger but came up with a good Rafa name and want to be the first to post it, so here it is, "NADALOMGODDY"...said with awe and respect. Pretty good, no?
Personally, I'm an atheist, so I'm not going to use it. :p
But if some people came up with Jesus Fed for Roger, then I suppose others may want to call Rafa Nadalomgoddy, no? With awe and respect. ;)

avocadoe
03-18-2006, 05:04 PM
Rafa's just 19. Each year he improves. Last year he wasn't nearly as good on hardcourts, and now he is! His game is so different from Feds. Apples and oranges, but both great at what they do.

mallorn
03-18-2006, 05:10 PM
Rafa's just 19. Each year he improves. Last year he wasn't nearly as good on hardcourts, and now he is! His game is so different from Feds. Apples and oranges, but both great at what they do.
It's true, it's amazing how quickly he improves. He never ceases to surprise me. :lol:
I think it's good that their games are so different, it makes for a nice contrast. :)

avocadoe
03-18-2006, 05:12 PM
Personally, I'm an atheist, so I'm not going to use it. :p
But if some people came up with Jesus Fed for Roger, then I suppose others may want to call Rafa Nadalomgoddy, no? With awe and respect. ;)
typo, lol, meant to write Nadalohmygoddy!!!! There that's righ :wavey:

mallorn
03-18-2006, 05:22 PM
typo, lol, meant to write Nadalohmygoddy!!!! There that's righ :wavey:
That's how I read it. ;)

Björki
03-18-2006, 05:23 PM
Vamos Rafa.
lets make it to the final :bounce:

sonia
03-18-2006, 05:38 PM
:bigclap: Vamos Rafa!!!!!!

rosespower
03-18-2006, 07:32 PM
Go rafa all the way to win the indian wells!!!

rue
03-18-2006, 09:12 PM
I think that Nadal is going to take out Blake today. We will have a final between Nadal and Federer. It should be a great one to watch. Nadal has so much confidence right now and he has a good chance of beating Federer.

ayena
03-18-2006, 09:41 PM
:bounce: Vamos Rafa!! :bounce: Good luck aginst James today!! :D

RogiFan88
03-18-2006, 10:08 PM
Well done, Rafa, vs. Baggy -- too bad Marcos ran out of steam and looked so beleaguered in the 2nd set. I guess Rafa's ankle is OK then? ;)

mallorn
03-18-2006, 10:17 PM
Well done, Rafa, vs. Baggy -- too bad Marcos ran out of steam and looked so beleaguered in the 2nd set. I guess Rafa's ankle is OK then? ;)
Only Rafa knows this. :shrug: If you read the last article I posted, it did swell up quite a lot and he had some pain during the Baggy match. :(

alexito
03-19-2006, 12:06 AM
sharapova win indian wells
in half hour will start match nadal vs blake

lilfairyprincess
03-19-2006, 01:39 AM
rafa lost the first set to james 7-5 :(

chocc0
03-19-2006, 02:15 AM
go rafa u can do it!

16681
03-19-2006, 02:23 AM
:bigcry: Rafa lost :bigcry: I'm so upset I forgot the score, but it was in straight sets :sad:

MariaV
03-19-2006, 02:25 AM
Rafa lost 5-7 3-6 but he shouldn't be too sad about the loss! :hug: VAMOS to Miami now! :hug: :bigclap: :bounce: :yippee: :dance:
James was simply too hot today. :shrug: Rafa's BP conversion 1/6 instead 2/7 for Blake. Blake played the important points simply better. And he received really well tonight. Incredible tennis tonight. :yeah:

GonzoFan
03-19-2006, 02:42 AM
Rafa :sobbing: :hug:

veyonce
03-19-2006, 02:45 AM
He did well in Indian Wells considering this is his second time at Indian Wells. Rafa just can't play his usual game against Blake. He still need to find the key to defeat Blake. It may be a blessing in disguise as he needs time to rest his ankle and for the blisters on his left hand to heal.. Looks to me he has another blister on his last finger.. The clay tournament is coming up and he needs to retain his titles.

Hope that he'll get a good draw in Miami and we can see him the finals again.

lilfairyprincess
03-19-2006, 02:49 AM
He did well in Indian Wells considering this is his second time at Indian Wells. Rafa just can't play his usual game against Blake. He still need to find the key to defeat Blake. It may be a blessing in disguise as he needs time to rest his ankle and for the blisters on his left hand to heal.. Looks to me he has another blister on his last finger.. The clay tournament is coming up and he needs to retain his titles.

Hope that he'll get a good draw in Miami and we can see him the finals again.

ditto!!! :hug:

ps..i :hearts: ur av veyonce!

khryss_20
03-19-2006, 03:37 AM
it was a bit unfortunate for rafa to lose against blake but tis means he can rest his foot and hav more tym practicing for miami....good luck rafael...!!!

veyonce
03-19-2006, 03:54 AM
Thanks, lilfairyprincess!! I like it a lot too.. lol...

Yesterday's post match transcripts:
PACIFIC LIFE OPEN
INDIAN WELLS, CALIFORNIA

March 17, 2006

R. NADAL/M. Baghdatis
7-5, 6-0

RAFAEL NADAL


THE MODERATOR: Questions for Rafael.

Q. What turned it around there late in the first set and through the second set?

RAFAEL NADAL: No, I think the match beginning very close, first game, very tough, large points. I can made the break for 5-2. In the 5-2, beginning, unbelievable windy - windy against me, so I have problems. I play bad one game with my serve, and he play good.

His game after made the 5-5 against wind him, no? So after I win my game with the wind in my favor, so that's normal. After he has 30-Love for go to a tiebreak. I play two good points, one good passing shot, he miss one ball with his forehand, and I won the first set, no?

The second set, I begin very tough. He has some misses, and I escape in the score.

ATP: "I ran away with the match."

Q. Was Rafael accurate with all his first serves in the second set?

RAFAEL NADAL: No, I think I miss. That's impossible.

Q. The stats say you were perfect in the second set.

RAFAEL NADAL: Yeah? A hundred percent?

Q. That's what the statistics said.

RAFAEL NADAL: Oh, yes? So is bad news because I am serving very slow. Is not a good statistic.

Q. Do you think he mentally let down in the second set?

RAFAEL NADAL: Maybe when I made the first break, he go a little bit down, no? I continuing hundred percent and I can run away in the score (smiling).

Q. How are you running with your ankle?

RAFAEL NADAL: Yeah, it's okay. I don't see the ankle because yesterday I have like this (indicating a large size, swelling).

ATP: Sprain.

RAFAEL NADAL: I have, but not too big.

Q. So today you woke up in the morning, and you could move it?

RAFAEL NADAL: I sleep with the foot like this (indicating elevated), ice all the time. So I am doing my best, me and my physio to play for every match, no?

Q. When you were running tonight, how did the ankle feel? Could you run with no pain?

RAFAEL NADAL: Maybe I run good. Maybe I run good. But in some movements, I have a little bit pain. But I am very happy I can run.

Q. Have you ever been timed in a hundred-meter dash?

RAFAEL NADAL: No, I don't know. Do you think very fast (smiling)?

Q. Yes.

RAFAEL NADAL: Or very slow?

Q. What about playing against James Blake?

RAFAEL NADAL: I going to have a very difficult match. He's playing very tough, unbelievable forehand. I watch him today. So I will need to play my best for try the match -- for try win this match. I have (indiscernible) motivation. I lost against him the US Open last year. My worst tournament maybe in the year. So I want to play good tomorrow. I want to try play a nice match.

For me, if I am playing the final here -- a good result, for me playing the semifinal, but is a good chance to stay in the final, maybe.

Q. Did you feel at the US Open you did not play your best tennis or did he play so well?

RAFAEL NADAL: He in the US Open? Maybe he play well in the US Open, no? For sure I wasn't playing well, but not against him. Against him, I play my best match in the US Open. But I was playing I think the worst moment in the last year, the US Open.

Q. Why did that happen? You were playing good tennis in the summer coming into the US Open.

RAFAEL NADAL: Yeah, I was playing in Montreal. Maybe I made a mistake because after Cincinnati, maybe it's better if I don't going to play in Cincinnati. I think is better.

Q. Because you played too much?

RAFAEL NADAL: I play too much, and after I want to go at home. If I play Cincinnati, maybe --

ATP: I should have stayed in the United States and not gone back home.

RAFAEL NADAL: In that moment, that's my decision, so I know for the future.

Q. Is it important for you to get revenge in matches against big players when you've lost one? Does it motivate you?

RAFAEL NADAL: No, I don't want the revenge. I want to play good every match. One time I lose, I lose. He play better. I don't want the revenge, no? I want to play good. I know if I am playing good, I have chance always. And if I am playing good, he play unbelievable, good play. The tennis is that.

Q. You use topspin more than other players. When you were coming up as a junior, were you trying to put on more topspin? Did you have an idol like Bjorn Borg?

RAFAEL NADAL: I never have any idol. I am trying improve in my game, but I don't have never any idol, no.

--------------
PACIFIC LIFE OPEN
INDIAN WELLS, CALIFORNIA

March 17, 2006

R. NADAL/M. Baghdatis
7-5, 6-0


MARCOS BAGHDATIS

THE MODERATOR: Questions for Marcos, please.

Q. What seemed to happen towards the end of the first set? What turned it around?

MARCOS BAGHDATIS: First set, I mean, we both played great tennis. I got broken at 3-All, I think. Was 3-All or 3-2? I don't remember. I got broken being 40-15 up, made some not mistakes, but didn't finish it off, so that paid. Then I got broken again at 6-5, 30-Love up.

Nadal got confident in the second set. He wasn't missing a ball. He was playing great tennis. Too good for me today. That's it.

Q. If you had to say there's a major difference between his play and your play, what is his strengths versus your strengths?

MARCOS BAGHDATIS: I don't know. I don't really know. It's the first time I play against him. It was a good lesson for me to see how he plays and stuff. He has a great forehand, great backhand. He has every shot. He's a great athlete.

I mean, physically he's amazing. It was a good lesson for me today. I think I know what to work on now more. Not work on more but, I mean, I saw how he's playing, I know now his game, so next time I play him I will have maybe a tactic to play against him. That's all. That's a good experience for me today.

I didn't play so bad. Like I said, he was too good for me today.

veyonce
03-19-2006, 03:57 AM
Susan's report on Rafa's post match conference today:

Saturday: Post-Match Interviews
Rafa will be in the interview room in 5 minutes. So I'll blog from there. Claire is going to use Uncle Lopy's camera to take photos so I can give you immediate info. I type faster than I write.

Rafa’s Interview. BLAKE def. Nadal, 7-5, 6-3.

Here he comes. He’s eating a cookie. He loves his cookies. No ice cream, I guess. Same gray jacket on. He just answered the phone, and is talking on it. He says, sorry.

Claire got a photo of it, and she is taking photos while I type.

He says, “Not the best day today.” He says Blake played very good. He says that Blake had confidence. Rafa fought all much. Maybe a bit too defensive in the first set. Played better in the second set. Had chances, had breakpoints. But Blake served unbelievable outside on the line. So nothing he could do.

Blake plays very aggressive all the time. Rafa does, too, but not the sam way James does. It's different. He says that in the difficult moments for him, Blake had good luck for him. He’s not going to put any excuse in, but the wind may have had something to do with it. But James played better.

James is playing at a very good level – top 5 level. He said, “We will see what his level is on clay.” Then we’ll know more. But he says he likely will stay in Top 10, but only Top 5 if he does well on clay.

Rafa is chewing on his cookie.

He could have done more today, but he tried his best, and fought all match. But James played better than him all day. He had chances, but James played better.

As for the injured foot, left one is okay. The other one is the problem. The right one, not 100%, but not too much of a problem today.

He says Federer will win. His favorite is Federer for tomorrow, but he says Blake can win. He says the favorite is always the No. 1.

He’s looking so cute now. The expressions are priceless, as he switches to Spanish to try to answer question.

For James to beat Federer, he has to believe he can win. That is the key.

He wanted to play the final, against Roger, but he wanted to play the final against anyone.

Re James and clay, Rafa says he’s a good player, but doesn’t know how he will do on clay. On clay, all matches are little bit different. Had a cute moment as he struggles with the word “effective.”

Sarah asked him about his signing autographs after today’s match. He said, sometimes you win, sometimes you lose, but he always has to stay with the fans. He appreciates the fans, and he understands that most were behind Blake, but he appreciates the sport and the fans. And he noted that in Madrid that worked in his favor, where there wasn’t one fan behind Ljubicic.

And he just announced he’s going to win Wimbledon this year!!! Seriously, a British journalist asked about his prospects for Wimbledon and he said, “I’m going to win.”

And on that note, the conference ended. He sounded upbeat, and looking ahead to Miami, and Wimbledon, I guess.

The media are back from the interview, and I love all the women going, “How cute is he?” As he’s munching cookies, laughing and smiling.

mallorn
03-19-2006, 08:05 AM
Thanks for the interviews, veyonce!
Too bad Rafa couldn't play his best yesterday :( but James played really well and deserved to win this one.
I hope Rafa will have enough time now to take care of the ankle and the blisters and will be in good spirits for Miami. :)

Björki
03-19-2006, 09:46 AM
Rafa :sad:

MariaV
03-19-2006, 10:17 AM
The media are back from the interview, and I love all the women going, “How cute is he?” As he’s munching cookies, laughing and smiling.
Well, how could you NOT find him cute. :lol:
Thanks Veyonce!!!!!! :worship: And Rafa! :worship: :worship:
Yes Mallorn, I hope he has some time to regroup now, and tio Toni will come to Miami as I understood. :hug:

MariaV
03-19-2006, 10:24 AM
And he just announced he’s going to win Wimbledon this year!!! Seriously, a British journalist asked about his prospects for Wimbledon and he said, “I’m going to win.”
Isn't he just priceless!!!!!!! :worship: :worship: He is so utterly utterly positive!!!!! How I envy his psoitive thinking! :D
The British journos just have to keep on asking about Wimbledon at every press conference! :haha: :rolls:

NaDALiTa
03-19-2006, 11:33 AM
too bad that Rafa couldn't played as usual.....i was very upset but this last press conference bring my smile back .... :)

SI you'ill win WImbledon and rip evrybody no?
:lol: :lol: show them who you are IN MIAMI !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! vamoooos

estrela
03-19-2006, 12:43 PM
Too bad that he lost :sad: better luck next time
that pressconference is funny, with his cookies and him winning Wimbledon :haha:

NaDALiTa
03-19-2006, 01:27 PM
to Rafa for Wimbly

So dream on, dream on, yeah
Don't ever let them steer you wrong
When life comes knocking
Gotta keep on rocking
Open that door and
Shout it to the world "I M GOING TO WIN " :yeah:

veyonce
03-19-2006, 02:27 PM
Blake gets offensive to top Nadal
American earns shot at No. 1 Federer

Leighton Ginn
The Desert Sun
March 19, 2006

INDIAN WELLS - James Blake said the key to his success Saturday against Rafael Nadal was making the most of his opportunities because they don't come often against the No. 2 player in the world.
Blake scored biggest during the key points as he disposed of Nadal 7-5, 6-3 in the semifinals of the Pacific Life Open. The victory earns Blake a shot at No. 1 Roger Federer today for his first Masters Series title.

"It came down to a couple big points here and there, and having to make some gets like he does to everyone else," Blake said. "As soon as I got my chances, I knew he's the type of guy that you have to kind of jump on that first chance.

"You can't wait for two and three and four opportunities in a point. You got to take that first chance to get on the offensive. If you let him get on the offensive, you're in big trouble."

Blake now stands at 2-0 against Nadal, all on hardcourts. The other victory was at the U.S. Open last year.

"I think Rafael is an unbelievable player. I think he somehow brings out the best in me because I played some of my best tennis against him at the U.S. Open," Blake said. "Today was a little trickier with it being a little colder and windier, but I still managed to feel great about my game."

Nadal has been dealing with a sprained right ankle since the fourth-round victory over Sebastien Grosjean.

However, Nadal was making no excuses.

"I try my best. I fight all match," Nadal said. "In the first set, I have my chances, but he's playing better than me today, no?


"I want to congratulate James because he's playing at very good level. Maybe I have chance, but he play better."

RogiFan88
03-19-2006, 03:07 PM
I haven't seen this match, but I'm sure Rafa gave it his all because always does. Blake has continued his improved form from last year, and this is his best surface, so it's definitely no shame to lose to Blake. I like Blake's game, but of course I'll cheer for Rogi. ;)

For Rafa, SF in IW is great! He gains over 200 ranking points too!

Miami is friendlier to Spanish-Latino players, so I expect him to do better there. He'll have a week to rest his ankle too. I wonder if he'll take part in the "Feed the Children" charity event that Corretja participated in with Capriati years ago??

P.S. Hope Uncle Toni goes easy on Rafa.

mallorn
03-19-2006, 09:40 PM
Rafa's interview after the semi:

March 18, 2006
J. BLAKE/R. Nadal

7-5, 6-3

An interview with:

RAFAEL NADAL

THE MODERATOR: Questions for Rafael.

Q. Is that the best you've seen James play?

RAFAEL NADAL: Now, I just play, too, against him. But I think he play good. He play aggressive. In difficult moments, he always have a confidence for win this point, about how to play good the point.
I fight all match, and I can do -- maybe I play a little defensive in the first set. After in the second set I improve a little bit, maybe I play a little bit better. I have some chances, one 15-40. In the first set, breakpoint in the 4-4, and he serve unbelievable. He serve outside on the line. So well play.

Q. Is there something about his game and the way he plays that you find particularly difficult?

RAFAEL NADAL: He play very aggressive all time, no?

Q. Like you.

RAFAEL NADAL: But different. Yeah, maybe I play aggressive, but different. He play all time inside the court. He return very fast all time. And the difficult moments, I think maybe the 15-40, 4-All, he has a good moment. He has a lot of confidence, so he has always the good luck in his favor, no? I don't want to say he has a good luck for that he won me, no? He won me because he play better. But in the difficult moments, always he has the good luck in his favor, no?

Q. Did the wind make a difference today?

RAFAEL NADAL: The wind, maybe I won, too. I never put an excuse. Not today the first day, no?

Q. Could you talk about James' potential. He's in the top 10. Could he be a regular challenger for slams? Could he win a Slam?

RAFAEL NADAL: All is very difficult. So he's playing a very good level, he play a level -- maybe right now he's playing at top five level, no? We will see on clay what is his results. If he play good on clay, he has a good chance for stay in the top positions, no?
Maybe I think he's going to finish the year in the top 10 if he continue like this. If he play good on clay, he has a good chance for stay in the top 5. In the tour, a lot of players is playing good.

Q. And off clay, could you assess how he would do against the very best?

RAFAEL NADAL: I can't watch the future. But if he's playing well, he finish the last year well, he is in a good moment.

Q. Is there anything more that you could have done today?

RAFAEL NADAL: Always. Always I can do more, no? But I try. I try my best. I fight all match. In the first set I have my chances, but he's playing better than me today, no? I want to say congratulate. I want to congratulate James because he's playing at very good level.
Maybe I have chance, but he play better.

Q. Since you came back in Marseille, how do you feel physically? Is everything okay? Are you perfectly fit? Is the foot 100%?

RAFAEL NADAL: Maybe the injury foot is hundred percent better. The other one is not hundred percent because against Grosjean I have a little bit problem.

ATP: Sprain.

Q. Sprain?

RAFAEL NADAL: Yeah, on the right foot. But it's okay. I feel okay.

Q. You've now played Roger and James back-to-back. How do you think the final will break down?

RAFAEL NADAL: Federer (smiling).

Q. Because? Could you explain?

RAFAEL NADAL: Because he's the No. 1. And in the finals for me, always the favorite is the best. For sure Blake can win, but for me my favorite is Federer.

Q. You're the favorite with Federer, three out of four.

RAFAEL NADAL: The favorite always is the No. 1. I can win. Blake can win. But the favorite is the No. 1.

Q. How much more does James have to do if he is able to beat Federer after the way he played today?

RAFAEL NADAL: (Translated from Spanish) More than anything, one thing, believe that he can win.

Q. How disappointed are you to not get another shot at Roger?

RAFAEL NADAL: For sure I want to play the final against Roger or against any player. But always is a nice final against the No. 1 and the No. 2 is interesting match. But for the tournament is interesting match, too, no? One American player against the No. 1, so that's good for the tournament. I love because for the tournament is better (laughter).

Q. Do you think with James' game, he can do well on the clay this spring?

RAFAEL NADAL: Yes.

Q. Do you think he can keep going deep into tournaments? Would you expect him to be able to continue into the clay court season?

RAFAEL NADAL: I don't see him play a lot of times on clay, no. But he's a good player. He's one top 10 player. He can play good. He knows surfaces.
But in clay, all matches is a little bit different, no? He play very aggressive, very inside the court. In the clay is not hundred percent effective.

Q. As of right now, what is your clay schedule? How many tournaments are you going to play?

RAFAEL NADAL: Monte-Carlo, Barcelona, Rome, Hamburg, Paris. I don't know if I going to play the week before Monte-Carlo.

Q. Can you describe your attitude on court compared to other players. You always seem very positive. Whether you win or lose, you always sign autographs.

RAFAEL NADAL: You know, the sport, sometimes win, sometimes lose. But is important always be positive and always stay with the fans because if you just stay with the fans when you win, that's a bad news.

Q. So you appreciate your fans?

RAFAEL NADAL: Yeah. Sometimes the fans today stay with James. But I understand perfect that, no? When I play Madrid, I won the final against Ljubicic, and no one on the court want to win Ljubicic. So here that's normal. The tennis and the sport, that's nice on the sport, no? The public for sure to stay with Blake, but I understand perfect. Is nice.

Q. How do you think you'll do at Wimbledon? Do you have any expectations?

RAFAEL NADAL: Yeah, going to win this year (smiling).

FastScripts by ASAP Sports

http://www.pacificlifeopen.com/en/players/interviews/2006/nadal318.asp

NaDALiTa
03-19-2006, 10:01 PM
Rafa stop asking journalist questions no? will you?

GonzoFan
03-19-2006, 11:08 PM
It's always nice to read his interviews, no? :D :lol:

He is so adorable :hug:

veyonce
03-20-2006, 05:49 AM
Think the 'no' is a habit from Spanish??

khryss_20
03-20-2006, 06:41 AM
Think the 'no' is a habit from Spanish??

i noticed that to0....everytime i get a hold of lopez's interviews it was lyk he always saez no every at d end of everi sentences...but i lyk it...i tink its cute... :)

veyonce
03-20-2006, 08:39 AM
I find it cute too!! Some people find it irritating though...

Lou_Lou_Ferrero
03-20-2006, 12:00 PM
he is such a cutie-pie, no???

heheh, it's a spanish thing- lopez does it, jcf does it but less often- his speciality is "anyways you know i play good, anyways, you know.... etc"

Lou_Lou_Ferrero
03-20-2006, 12:07 PM
Susan's report on Rafa's post match conference today:

Saturday: Post-Match Interviews
Rafa will be in the interview room in 5 minutes. So I'll blog from there. Claire is going to use Uncle Lopy's camera to take photos so I can give you immediate info. I type faster than I write.

Rafa’s Interview. BLAKE def. Nadal, 7-5, 6-3.

Here he comes. He’s eating a cookie. He loves his cookies. No ice cream, I guess. Same gray jacket on. He just answered the phone, and is talking on it. He says, sorry.

Claire got a photo of it, and she is taking photos while I type.

He says, “Not the best day today.” He says Blake played very good. He says that Blake had confidence. Rafa fought all much. Maybe a bit too defensive in the first set. Played better in the second set. Had chances, had breakpoints. But Blake served unbelievable outside on the line. So nothing he could do.

Blake plays very aggressive all the time. Rafa does, too, but not the sam way James does. It's different. He says that in the difficult moments for him, Blake had good luck for him. He’s not going to put any excuse in, but the wind may have had something to do with it. But James played better.

James is playing at a very good level – top 5 level. He said, “We will see what his level is on clay.” Then we’ll know more. But he says he likely will stay in Top 10, but only Top 5 if he does well on clay.

Rafa is chewing on his cookie.

He could have done more today, but he tried his best, and fought all match. But James played better than him all day. He had chances, but James played better.

As for the injured foot, left one is okay. The other one is the problem. The right one, not 100%, but not too much of a problem today.

He says Federer will win. His favorite is Federer for tomorrow, but he says Blake can win. He says the favorite is always the No. 1.

He’s looking so cute now. The expressions are priceless, as he switches to Spanish to try to answer question.

For James to beat Federer, he has to believe he can win. That is the key.

He wanted to play the final, against Roger, but he wanted to play the final against anyone.

Re James and clay, Rafa says he’s a good player, but doesn’t know how he will do on clay. On clay, all matches are little bit different. Had a cute moment as he struggles with the word “effective.”

Sarah asked him about his signing autographs after today’s match. He said, sometimes you win, sometimes you lose, but he always has to stay with the fans. He appreciates the fans, and he understands that most were behind Blake, but he appreciates the sport and the fans. And he noted that in Madrid that worked in his favor, where there wasn’t one fan behind Ljubicic.

And he just announced he’s going to win Wimbledon this year!!! Seriously, a British journalist asked about his prospects for Wimbledon and he said, “I’m going to win.”

And on that note, the conference ended. He sounded upbeat, and looking ahead to Miami, and Wimbledon, I guess.

The media are back from the interview, and I love all the women going, “How cute is he?” As he’s munching cookies, laughing and smiling.

GAAAAH! Just read this... oh my god the cuteness... :p :p and he loves cookies!! i love cookies too! we are obviously destined to be together... ;) :devil:

mallorn
03-20-2006, 12:38 PM
nou.amic :worship: of vr.com translated an article with Uncle Toni's comments on the Blake match.
Nadal misses out on his second final this year against Federer


• "Physically he's fine, but he still has to improve his game," says his Uncle Toni

http://www.elperiodico.com/EDICION/ED060320/CAS/FOTOS/DEPORTES/CARP02/f029gh02.jpg
Nadal makes spectacular dive to return a ball against Blake. Photo: AP / ELISE AMENDOLA

By Jaume Pujol-Galceran for El Periodico

Barcelona, 20 March 06 .- Rafael Nadal will have to wait for another opportunity to meet Roger Federer in a final. In Indian Wells James Blake cut his path in the semifinals by beating him 7-5 6-3. "He played better than him and there's not much else to say," explained his uncle/trainer Toni Nadal, who watched the match on television at home in Manacor in the early hours of Sunday morning and today travels to the United States to be with his nephew during the second Masters Series of the season that begins next Thursday in Key Biscayne.

An unforgettable setting for the young player from Manacor who last year contested his first Masters Series final there against the world number one. Nadal lost that match against Federer after having two match balls, but his performance in that tournament was the beginning of the spectacular progress that has meant that he now returns to Key Biscayne firmly installed as the world number two.

HALF SATISFIED

On his return to competition, Nadal has won one title (against Federer in Dubai) and has reached two semifinals. One in Marseille and the other just now in Indian Wells, where he reached the semifinals without conceding a single set. Any other tennis player would consider this to be a success, especially after having spent four months without playing. But neither Nadal nor his uncle are totally satisfied with his performance, particularly in his match against Blake. In Toni's judgement: "We can't complain because he is in perfect condition physically, he's recovered from the injury. But Rafa still has to raise the level of his game. He played short against Blake, without any depth, and he had problems with his serve. That made him play too much on the defensive."

Kilometers away from Manacor, his nephew is of the same opinion. "Blake was more aggressive than me and that allowed him to get control. Also, in the decisive moments, he was very confident in his shots and very brave. While I think I was too defensive in the first set," admitted Nadal who had already lost (4-6, 6-4, 3-6, 1-6) to Blake in the third round of last year's US Open.

On Saturday Nadal had few opportunities to surprise Blake. The American went 3-1 ahead in the first set and was only troubled when the very combative Nadal drew level at 4-4 and had a break point against him. Blake solved the situation with his serve, a weapon which was decisive in his defeat of the Mallorcan.

Spanish original:
http://www.elperiodico.com/default.asp?idpublicacio_PK=5&idioma=CAS&idnoticia_PK=289349&idseccio_PK=14&h=060320

veyonce
03-20-2006, 02:40 PM
Extract from Federer's post match press conference.. Some interesting points for Rafa on how to defeat Blake...

March 19, 2006
R. FEDERER/J. Blake
7-5, 6-3, 6-0
An interview with:
ROGER FEDERER

THE MODERATOR: Questions.

Q. Early in the first set, were you having trouble getting a rhythm?

ROGER FEDERER: No. I just thought he played better, as simple as that. He played aggressive, took the ball early, put away his forehands when he could, didn't miss on the backhand, made me run around. That's usually what I do. He gave me a little bit of my own medicine.

I didn't really play poor, I thought, you know. , so there was no need to sort of be frightened by that. I just hoped, you know, I get maybe at least one break back in that first set. So I was surprised obviously coming back all the way and winning the set. Obviously, that was tough to handle for him after.

Q. Did you think he was capable of playing at that level throughout four or five sets, the level he showed in the first five games?

ROGER FEDERER: He didn't need it for four or five. Three would have been enough playing at that rhythm.

So, no, I absolutely thought so because I saw the match with Nadal last night. He played excellent. In the wind, it was tough conditions, against Nadal. I knew if you can already put him away in two sets, he's very dangerous for me, too.

These wins against top players like him yesterday obviously can lift his game up a gear and he can play even better tennis against me in the finals. What a great opportunity not only to beat the second best and then also the best back to back, then also on top of that win the tournament, that can really give you wings. The people were behind him. I was expecting that he was going too play really well today.

Q. You really seemed to take him out of his rhythm on his service games. He didn't even win half of the points on his own serve. Can you talk about that.

ROGER FEDERER: Yeah, I mean, I remember I played him not too long ago in Cincinnati in the first round. I had a tough one there. I remember he really impressed me how he served. I knew that it was important to get the first serve back, sort of get into play, not let him dominate all the time.

On the second serve I knew anyway I've got a chance against anybody. But the first serve is sometimes key to really get those important points. That's what I really did well today. I mean, of course, he didn't serve that great in the second and the third, like in the first. But I think that was definitely key to success today, also returning his serve and make him work hard on each and every service game, not give him some easy games where he can relax.

Q. What kind of improvement have you seen in James game since Cincinnati?

ROGER FEDERER: I think already there he was playing better. I really have the feeling his backhand got much more consistent, especially on the return. He doesn't give away that many returns any more. I think that's really helped him to improve.

I think, like I said, his first serve has also improved. His forehand was always good. His movement, too. I think those are the key things.

Q. You were saying coming into the tournament when everyone was asking about playing Nadal in the final, that he actually had to get there and get through the draw. You get through to the final consistently, which might separate you from Nadal, and even Blake today.

ROGER FEDERER: Well, you know, I've gotten sort of used to playing on big occasions, too. I have that advantage, being so used to any situation. Being 4-1 down, double break, there's no need for me to panic, whereas others maybe think, "I've already lost." For me, that doesn't count.

I think the more you put yourself in the position, the more you learn from it, the stronger you get. I have that advantage over James, especially over James, but also over Nadal.

Q. Have you thought about a calendar year Grand Slam yet? Has it crossed your mind yet?

ROGER FEDERER: Yes and no. But I think more of winning four Grand Slams in a row, which is the French for me. I am preparing mentally for the tough times over there because the pressure will be huge on me from myself and everything. I really hope I can play a good French Open this year.

Q. When you watched Blake beat Nadal, did you think it was going to be even tougher than you thought?

ROGER FEDERER: Well, you know, I knew it's going to be a tough match for Raf. He beat him at the US Open, that was already over five sets. That's when you can show how good you are. I knew it was going to be a tough one. I thought James played extremely well in that match yesterday. Rafa had tough times with James game. When I saw James still won, I was a little bit surprised because Rafa has been playing so well.

I knew this is a very different match, actually, I was looking forward to. I had to adapt, sort of keep my mindset right, my tactics. I'm happy I was able to achieve that.

Q. What will it take for you to wear the type of shirt that Nadal wears or even Andre the other night on a course against Haas?

ROGER FEDERER: Practice, it's okay, but not in the match for me.

Q. Why is that?
ROGER FEDERER: It's not me.

FastScripts by ASAP Sports