THE CHAMPIONSHIPS 2012
Nervous Nadal Looking To Improve
by ATP Staff|
Two-time Wimbledon champion Rafael Nadal won his first-round match over Thomaz Bellucci in straight sets Tuesday, but admitted that he was uneasy at the start of the match, which saw him lose the first four games.
“I think today I didn't play my best match,” said Nadal. “I think especially in the first set, I played little bit too nervous, little bit not knowing exactly what to do. My movements were a little bit in a defensive way, not in an aggressive way.”
The World No. 2 went on to dominate the first set tie-break, and then found his rhythm, dropping just five games over the next two sets against his fellow left-handed competitor to win 7-6(0), 6-2, 6-3.
“The important thing and the best feeling for me is that I improved my game during the match, and that's important for the practice of tomorrow and the next match,” Nadal said. “I need to keep improving. [It’s[ going to be a difficult tournament, but I am here to try my best, as I did every year, and hopefully I can play a little bit better in the next round.”
Nadal is focussed on winning his 12th Grand Slam title, but the Mallorcan is keeping a close eye on another tournament in progress, the UEFA Euro 2012. Spain will clash with rival Portugal in Wednesday’s semi-finals, and Nadal compared the match-up to his Roland Garros semi-final with David Ferrer.
“Cristiano [Ronaldo] is fighting [to be] the best Player of the Year. I had the chance to meet him a few times. He's great. He's a winner. We will be in trouble if he has his best day. Portugal has a complete team,” said Nadal.
“Being a supporter of Spain, you cannot expect to win the semi-finals of the Euro against an easy opponent. Is the same that when I am in the semi-finals of Roland Garros. You have a tough opponent in front. So Spain has one of the toughest opponents possible in front, and hopefully Spain can keep playing the way that we did the last couple of years, almost six years, and be able to be in that final another time.”
The 26-year-old Spaniard will face Lukas Rosol in the second round.