(Well, they certainly look trust-worthy.)
Depending on which one you talk to, Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal are either embroiled in a battle for the year ending No. 1 (Federer) or just in London to have some fun (Nadal). Fibs or frankness? You decide.
Here’s Federer talking to reporters during the World Tour Finals Media Day on Wednesday (via the AFP):
“I am aware of it (the race to finish world number one) and I would be lying if I said I was just here to play well.”
“Definitely I am here to win the tournament and to try to stay number one in the world. It is obvious.”
“The competition is really stiff so it is not going to be easy for me or Rafa if he wants to get it.”
But Rafael Nadal says he’s actually not too interested in the whole “battle for the year end No. 1” thing. (via AFP)
“For me the main thing is to be here and enjoy this experience,” Nadal told reporters. “Playing the tournament in London will be amazing.”
“The rest, finishing number one doesn’t matter. My only goal is to try to play my best tennis here in London.”
“If I win the tournament it doesn’t matter if I am number ten. The ranking is important yes, but not the most important thing for me.”
“For the last five years I was two and one in the rankings, so I have had this experience for a long time.”
“If I am competitive to try to win then I am more than happy. If I win this tournament it doesn’t matter if I am one, two or three.”
Click here to see how the No. 1 ranking may shake out in London.
On a side note, Federer also told Reuters that he’s “looking forward” to playing Andy Murray this week – and improving his 3-6 record against the Scot to, say, 5-6:
“I hope so,” the 28-year-old replied when asked about the prospect of playing Murray in the round-robin and then again in the final. “If I beat him twice, that means I’m in the finals, he’s in the finals and everybody is happy. Right?”
Well maybe not everybody, Rog. But I like the way you think.
Action beings on Sunday at the O2 arena: Andy Murray plays Juan Martin del Potro and Roger Federer plays Fernando Verdasco. Rafael Nadal begins his bid for year-ending No. 1 – or not, whatever – on Monday when he plays Robin Soderling. It’s Djokovic vs. Davydenko on Monday evening.