In an article posted on Spanish Eurosport on Wednesday, Toni Nadal confirms that his injured nephew is returning to the practice courts on Monday to prepare to defend his title at Indian Wells this March. Toni’s quotes are excerpted from a live internet chat he conducted with Eurosport readers. (Click here for the original – my Google-assisted translation):
Toni Nadal reveals that his ward would have a better serve if he played right-handed, because he’s not as strong with the left, but it is still a part of his game that has improved a lot. He also ensures that Nadal’s recovery is well under way and that this Monday he will train on the courts.
In a chat Toni Nadal conducted with eurosport.yahoo.es “net surfers”, the supposed weakness of Nadal’s service was a key issue, “it is something that we have improved, but I think it would get better if he were right-handed“.
Toni said: “I always thought that he was left handed, because when he was little he showed much more strength on his left side, but over time I realized that it is not so.” “I think it was not clear to him, either,” he adds laughing.
The coach added about his player “when he tosses the ball he does not have the same precision, it is something we are working very hard on and I hope this year we’ll notice a lot more (improvement),” he explains.
Physical problems have hurt Rafael Nadal and in the opinion of (Eurosport) readers being more aggressive and shortening the points could be the key to avoiding them, “he has greatly changed the way he plays, but do not forget that he is a clay court player and it is not easy to change a playing style,” says Rafa’s uncle.
“He has to play with insoles that force him to change his support and that cause pain, but it is a part of his game and we have to admit that this is what exists.” “Right now we have to regain the physical and athletic work, all the rest is good.” “Clearly he’s had more injuries than usual and that’s affected his workouts and consequently his game, because if you have the chance to train as normal, things are much better – as happened in 2008,” he explains.
Toni says when his pupil will begin training on court, “he is already well, today has passed some tests and everything goes as planned, so we will start training this Monday.” “He’s coming back to play at Indian Wells, although the issue of the Davis Cup is in the air, depending on the evolution of his injury and what the doctors say,” he adds.
Asked about the absence of some of the most important players in the ATP competition in the Davis Cup, the coach with a clear goal, “everyone has his reasons and it is clear that the tennis schedule is too tight, furthermore the surface change is a big problem.”
As for the characteristic that stands out the most in Nadal, his coach is clear, “his mentality is a concept of effort and life, things in life that aren’t given to us as gifts, at the end when you’re on the court and can not give your maximum the only thing that saves you is your mentality. ” “He has worked very well and has always been very self-critical,” he explains.
On the other hand, despite the injury he thinks that the start of the year has been good: “in Australia and in Doha he played more into the court, if one watches the match against Murray in quarters: I do not believe that he ran much more than his opponent” “On fast courts we try to be more aggressive and play more within the court and he believes he’s got it, it’s no wonder he’s won big matches on this surface, but I repeat it is not easy to change a style of play, and sometimes it’s confusing”, he says.
Rafa is less verbose than his uncle, offering this update on his Facebook page on Tuesday: “Back to practice soon… Stay tuned.”