Rafael Nadal is in Madrid, training to win his third Masters 1000 clay court title of the year. The guy looks relaxed. Wouldn’t you feel pretty loose if you held more Masters titles than anyone in history at the ripe old age of 23? (Click here for more on this astounding accomplishment.)
Here’s some of the clay GOAT’s thoughts on the upcoming tournament (via Xinhua):
“I always want to play in Madrid. They have always treated me very well and I couldn’t be more grateful,” he said in an interview with sports paper Diario AS.
“This year I am arriving in different physical condition than last year. Last year I played when my knee was bad, but I always want to play here whenever possible,” he said.
“I always say that you have to learn to enjoy yourself even if you are suffering, except when the pain stops you, then you can’t carry on. The worst was not losing last year’s Roland Garros (French Open) or not being able to play at Wimbledon. The worst thing is knowing that physically you are not in condition. Losing really affects you, but the other (being injured) is worse,” he insisted.
“Now I am thinking about winning in Madrid and taking it day by day. I am not setting targets. I don’t care about being number 1, 2 or 3 in the world, I care about being happy,” said Nadal.
He looks happy to me:
“It’s your turn, Uncle Toni”:
Here’s some video of Rafa practicing with Juan Monaco:
While the World No. 3 was practicing with Pico, the World No. 1 beat Arnaud Clement in the third round of Estoril and World No. 2 Novak Djokovic retired due to allergies/illness/fatigue in the quarterfinals of his own Serbia Open after going down a set to his young compatriot (and Roger Fed training partner in Indian Wells), Filip Krajinovic. Talk about being all over the map.