Top Coach Reflects On Rafael Nadal'S Future

The coach reflects on the future of Rafael Nadal

Rafael Nadal finished the 2004 season with the Davis Cup crown and set his sights on high goals in 2005. After losing a close duel to Lleyton Hewitt at the Australian Open, Nadal traveled to Argentina, Brazil and Mexico and competed in his dear clay court.

The youngster won consecutive titles in Costa Do Sauipe and Acapulco and was just outside the top 30 at the age of 18. Nadal skipped Indian Wells and returned to action in Miami. He beat Rainer Schuettler and Fernando Verdasco to reach the round of 16 for the second year in a row, having defeated Roger Federer in the third round 12 months earlier.

Rafa had to work hard against Ivan Ljubicic in the fight for the quarter-finals, beating the Croatian 6-4, 6-7, 6-3 in two hours and 44 minutes. Nadal suffered just one break and won three back games from 12 chances to emerge victorious.

Ljubicic fought well in the second set to knock him down in the tie break before Nadal rallied in the decider to cross the finish line first and put Thomas Johannson in check. Rafa praised his serve after the match and said that it worked much better than in previous rounds.

Furthermore, Nadal brought up that remarkable victory over Federer a year ago, calling the Swiss the greatest player and bringing back fond memories of their first meeting. «I won the match because I played very well and stayed aggressive.

Ljubicic not only served well, but also performed at a great level from the baseline, putting a lot of pressure on me. I had to fight a lot and come back well; that was the critical element. The Key Biscayne surface suits my game, it’s not too fast and I like it.

I love how my serve worked today; It has been much better than in the previous rounds.»

Rafa had a great 2022

In a recent interview at the International Sports Forum held in Spain, Toni Nadal, Rafael Nadal’s uncle and former coach, spoke about how long he thought his nephew would continue to play.

«I’m not a fortune teller, I don’t know. I think that as long as he feels he has a chance of winning, he will continue. When he sees that he has no options, if he goes to a tournament and has no chance of winning, I don’t think he will play,» said uncle Toni on Rafael Nadal’s retirement.

«How much time does Rafa have left? I don’t know, it will clearly depend on his rivals, on his body,» he added.

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