Wednesday, 31 August 2011
Here are various match reports
Sky Sports - The world number two was forced to dig deeper than most people would have expected before eventually coming through 6-3 7-6 (7/1) 7-5 victory in the night session on Arthur Ashe Stadium.... Read more here
Telegraph - Rafael Nadal overcame a spirited challenge from Kazakhstan's Andrey Golubev to reach the second round of the US Open with a 6-3 7-6 (7/1) 7-5 victory in the night session on Arthur Ashe Stadium.... Read more here
The Hindu - Rafael Nadal’s first match as defending U.S. Open champion was hardly a tour de force, with the Spaniard lucky to record a straight sets victory over the relatively lowly-ranked Andrey Golubev on Tuesday... Read more here
Sunday, 28 August 2011
Saturday, 27 August 2011
THE MODERATOR: Questions in English first, please.
Q. What are your thoughts about being here during a hurricane, and how will you spend your time?
RAFAEL NADAL: I don’t know what’s going on, I think. Nobody knows exactly what’s going on, no? But having the club closed, all the places in Manhattan will be closed, so not much. Just stay in the hotel. Maybe watch some films. But we will see what’s going on. I never had an experience with a hurricane. Is something new. I think is very bad for the city, for the weekend, for everybody. But, you know, that’s a new experience, and not enjoyable experience, but we know how is when is hurricane.
Q. How are the fingers?
RAFAEL NADAL: Much better. I am able to practice with normal conditions.
Q. Bandages? No bandages or anything?
RAFAEL NADAL: Bandages, yes. The skin is still very thin, but it’s fine.
Q. A lot of people have said you’ve been stymied, you’ve been flummoxed by Djokovic this season. I mean, do you feel like if you possibly meet him in the US Open this week or next week that you have good chance against him?
RAFAEL NADAL: Well, I am here. You know, I am here at the start of the tournament and you start to talk about a match against Djokovic. I have to win a lot to play Djokovic. And probably him, too. He’s not in the final yet. I am focused on try to play well and try to have very good practice this week. That’s what I am doing. And the good chances against Djokovic, those chances always depends how I am playing, how he’s playing. Not talking about here, talking in general. After we will see, no? I think I played a fantastic year this year. I had a lot of victories all the year; I am not happy about how I played against him.
Q. Could you talk about exactly what happened to your fingers? You got burned in Cincinnati at some restaurant, right?
RAFAEL NADAL: Yeah, I get burned in a Japanese restaurant. Probably, you know, the Teppanyaki grill was there, probably the plate. When I arrived at the restaurant the plate was there, so probably the plate stayed there for a long time. Not inside the grill. Something like this away to the grill. You know, when they put the food, I tried to put the plate closer to me and was obviously very hot. (Smiling.)
Q. So your pointing finger and two fingers?
RAFAEL NADAL: Two fingers.
Q. Can you tell us a little bit about this book? Was it important for you to do something like this?
RAFAEL NADAL: Well, it is something that we decided to do. Was the really first autobiography I was able to do. Was a good opportunity to work with John Carlin. We had a very good feeling together. He speaks in Spanish, too, so it makes a little bit easier everything to talk about the emotion and to talk about, you know… I think it was a fantastic experience. I talk a long time with him and remember a lot of things that you normally usually don’t think about the past, no? So when you start to talk you remember, yeah, few moments of your career, few moments when you were a kid. Was interesting and I had fun, and hopefully the book will like to the people.
Q. In the book where you talk about your parents’ separation, it seemed like it came out of the blue for you, that you did not realize that they were having any troubles. Is that right?
RAFAEL NADAL: I didn’t understand that very well. (Translation.) You know, what happened there was but in the book - I never talk about my personal things in the press, but, you know, all the changes in your life needs a little bit of time. That’s what happened. So after a little bit of time I was perfect, but, you know, at the beginning it’s tough. But, you know, I am not the only one who has the parents divorcing in one moment of my life. Only thing is that Mallorca the family is very important, you are very close of the people that your friends, your family. So any change in this part, these people close to you, affects you, no? That’s happened. That’s past.
Q. I understand how it affected you. What I don’t understand is how you did not see problems between your mother and father. You did not notice problems between your mom and dad?
RAFAEL NADAL: I know the problems, but anyway, I gonna repeat you, I don’t want to talk about that now.
Q. How does it feel to come here after having you won it last year? Do you see the tournament different? Is it less pressure because you won it once?
RAFAEL NADAL: The emotions probably are a little bit different, because when you come back after the victory of last year the emotions are higher. Of course, it was the last Grand Slam for me to complete all four. Was very, very nice moment of my career, one of the biggest moments of my career. That makes the comeback a little more special. But if we talk about the goal, is the same. Play well, try to arrive to the final rounds. That’s the same, no? Pressure? I don’t feel extra pressure. I am happy about how I did. I didn’t play very well during the summer, but I am practicing much better here. So we’ll see.
Q. Have you been surprised this year by the turnaround, where before it was you and Roger for so long at the top, and now all of a sudden - Djokovic didn’t come out of nowhere, but he really has jumped up very quickly this year. Have you been surprised by that change?
RAFAEL NADAL: Djokovic didn’t arrive this year, no?
Q. But he was not playing at the level that you were…
RAFAEL NADAL: He was No. 3 of the world for three years. That’s not bad.
Q. But he only won one slam.
RAFAEL NADAL: Only one, and most of the people never won one. For me is a little bit strange about the people here from tennis talks about Djokovic, about his big new improvement. Djokovic was here before, no? Djokovic played fantastic before. He had fantastic potential to be where he is today. He’s doing great. He’s playing without injuries. He’s playing very solid, the mental, the tennis. What he’s doing is something very difficult to repeat. For me surprise? I think for everybody surprise see a player that he’s not losing. He’s only lost two matches during all the year. For everybody surprising, but for me is no surprise that Djokovic is No. 1. For me is not a surprise that Djokovic is able to win Grand Slams, because he’s very good. That’s not from six months ago.
Q. Two questions: One, you’re 25 years old. Does it feel strange to have a book about your life at 25? And second, you seem like generally a pretty private person. What did you want to tell? What did you want to accomplish with this book?
RAFAEL NADAL: Well, I am lucky. 25 years old and I enjoyed a lot of experiences in my life. You never know if you can have another book in the future, but I felt it’s a good time to have that one. Is a little bit of the history of my life. Is a little bit of the history how I am where I am today. Just open a little bit more of my life to them, to the fans, to the people who support me, the people who are interested about me. For me, you know, now I am a little bit more open with the fans with the Twitter with the Facebook, and now with the book. So I am trying to be more connected with them, and that’s probably a good way to do it.
Please have a look around this forum as it is a great place to chat about tennis with other fans from around the world.
We cover all the ATP tournaments and also have threads for other sports & interests. It is free to join and is open 24/7.
Here is the website www.mytennislounge.com The address is also posted in the link bar at the top of this Blog.
Friday, 26 August 2011
Rafa returns the love with 10 and Under Tennis
For the campers of the Child Center of New York (CCNY), coming to the US Open and getting a chance to experience SmashZone was more than enough to classify August 25 as the red-letter day on their summer calendar.
Then Rafael Nadal wanted to see what all the fun was about, and a great day turned into an unforgettable event.
The defending Open champion and No. 2 seed stepped out from Interview Room 1 and the 2011 US Open Draw Ceremony and ambled over to the Chase Center, where SmashZone is housed, in full tennis gear, ready to take part in a 10 and Under Tennis clinic. Rafa's appearance is part of the "Returning the Love" initiative, with the US Open and the players of the ATP & WTA tours are proactively reaching out to New York City communities and surrounding areas— including youth, families and non-profit organizations—to create a positive and lasting impact.
It took a few seconds before each of the 30 kids from around the Greater Queens area realized who had just walked in the door - but when they did, they raced to the court in the middle of the floor.
"Thank you very much," Nadal said to each child as they lined up to hit, smiling as he swatted a few trick shots over the net with the foam balls designed for the QuickStart play format.
"Good job by all you guys - you should be very proud."
Not too long ago, the 25-year-old Grand Slam champion was in their shoes, taking his first swings as a small boy in Spain. In the United States, more and more youngsters learn the game through 10 and Under Tennis, which makes the game more accessible to children - with pop-up nets, smaller court dimensions and foam balls, a child can hitting successfully and have fun the very first day they pick up a racquet. SmashZone displays a wide array of 10 and Under Tennis-related games and activities which displace antiquated lessons and drills as introduction to tennis for today's kids.
"(The event) was a tremendous opportunity for our kids to learn a little bit about the sport of tennis and in real-life see a player like Nadal who is so great at what he does," said Laura Schenone, CCNY Communications Director. "We hope that this will give them the drive to achieve their own aspirations through tennis."
Schenone's CCNY outfit has operated in Queens for nearly 60 years as a non-profit agency to help at-risk children succeed in life. Their mission through programming - which includes Head Start, youth counseling, after-school mentorship and child abuse prevention in addition to recreational activities - is to create safe, active alternatives for children and their families to keep the family unit intact.
"We serve 18,000 kids each year with over 80 programs," said Schenone. "These kids are part of our summer camp program, and to have the chance to be here, where it all happens in tennis is thrilling - we're all so lucky."
Its true – how many kids in the world can say that they played tennis with the great Rafael Nadal?
For more information about the Child Center of New York and CCNY programming, please visit their website.
Due to the bad weather this event was cancelled. I have no news of any rescheduled date.
Found courtesy of Rafaholics
Saturday, August 27, 2011 at 6:00PM
"Rafa: My Story"
- Books available at the cash registers starting 10AM
- Customers are required to purchase book(s) at the event/store in order to receive a wristband
- One (1) wristband per paying customer
- Wristband will be placed on customer at point of purchase
- Each person in line must have a wristband and a book
- Line-up will be outside front entrance
- Photography is NOT allowed
- No personalization
- Promotional material or memorabilia will NOT be signed
*Event guidelines are subject to change.
Thank you in advance for your cooperation.
Thursday, 25 August 2011
Wednesday, 24 August 2011
The World No. 1 Novak Djokovic and 10-time Grand Slam winner Rafael Nadal has went out together for some entertainment at Mamma Mia in New York.
Djokovic and Nadal have spotted at the ancient old musical Mamma Mia in New York, where both the players has some entertainment on Tuesday night. The American people amazed to see the tennis stars together at Mamma Mia. The 2011 French Open champion Nadal said that, he come from Broadway to see Mamma Mia along with Novak and had taken picture with them. Djokovic said that he will be return back into the action at US Open tournament, where he will begin practice session soon.
The 2011 Wimbledon Champion Djokovic has been recovering from shoulder injury, where he sustained in the 2011 Cincinnati Masters final against Andy Murray on last week end. He added he was amazed to watch the Mamma Mia participants. The 25-year-old Nadal said that he has enjoyed a lot at the ancient old musical Mamma Mia in New York on Tuesday night. Spaniard has begun his training session on Tuesday afternoon at the Center Court in New York. Djokovic will be seeded No. 1 following with defending champion Rafael Nadal, five-time US Open champion Roger Federer and three-time Grand Slam finalist Andy Murray.
Of course, now we can all see that the turnaround was inevitable. Empowered physically and mentally by a new diet, a Davis Cup title and a better serve, the streamlined Novak no longer had a soft spot -- i.e., Roger Federer's backhand, Andy Murray's brain -- to brutalize. As a result, Nadal suddenly understood what it felt like to play against himself. And he didn't like it.
This harsh reality has been harder for Nadal to accept than one would have expected. He's come right out and said that figuring out how to turn the tables on Djokovic is such a big job that it can't possibly happen before next season. Federer, with his bird's eye perspective on the game, recently hit on why that is: Rafa's never been dominated before. "I don't think it's rattling him badly," he said, diplomatic as ever, of Djokovic's five straight wins over Nadal. "But it should have some effect on him, because he doesn't have losing streaks against many players, or hasn't had, because he was such a good teenager, really."
That's a key point. Nadal was so good at such a young age that he skipped over an important step in development. The natural order of things is for a player, no matter how talented, to get beaten like an old rug early in his ATP career. Back in his pony-tail days, Federer regularly got pounded by Andre Agassi and even Lleyton Hewitt, before his 2003 breakthrough. But the same didn't happen to Nadal. He was a true prodigy, a phenomenon. In addition to his freakish teenage physique and skills, injuries kept him off the circuit early on. So when he made his very first appearance at Roland Garros, he won the thing. He even won his first-ever match against Federer, then the new number-one player in the world. And it was on a hard court.
This led to the Rafa Mythos, which Nadal bought into with equal or greater fervor than even his opponents. "I think I have the capacity to accept difficulties and overcome them that is superior to many of my rivals," he says in his new book.
That certainly has been true. Now it's more true of Djokovic than it is of Nadal.
The Spaniard's tail-between-the-legs response to Djokovic's rise has been a bit of a shock. Rafa has never been one to swagger -- that's always been an important aspect of his appeal. He's a pleasant, genuine guy. The idealized Nice Young Man. He brings boyish enthusiasm, not marking-my-territory arrogance, to the court. But there is a flip side to that humility: Abject acceptance of the Way of Things, whatever it might be. There will be no Connorsesque, "I'll chase that S.O.B. to the ends of the earth" bluster from him. He's number two again? OK, Rafa doesn't like it, but he accepts it.
To change this new, unpleasant reality, he needs to go away for a while, soak in the hot tub, gather his brain trust -- and work, work, work.
At least he thinks he does. He actually doesn't. And maybe Soreshouldergatewill convince him that the time to strike isn't 2012 but right now, in New York. Djokovic retired in the Cincy final against Murray, kicking up speculation that he's seriously hurt, that he's burned out. That he won't be ready for the U.S. Open next week. He'll be fit and ready, make no mistake. But the Djoker is amental block for Nadal, not a physical one. Rafa just needs to believe the Serbian will be 99% instead of 100%.
Yes, Djokovic can beat anyone at any time. That includes Federer and Nadal and the ghosts of Budge and Laver. He's that good. But the same is still true of Rafa. He's the defending U.S. Open champion, let's remember. And it's not like Djokovic has been blowing Nadal off the court this season. Their matches have been close, and Rafa just needs that little extra oomph to get over the hump. I never thought I'd be saying this, but he just needs to believe in himself.