R. Nadal – 14.11.05 1
An interview with:
THE MODERATOR: Ladies and gentlemen, let's start our Q&A now.
Q. I'm sorry about your injury. There are also many other injured players who have withdrawn, including Federer himself who's playing but injured. Can you predict who will be triumphant in the tournament, who will win?
RAFAEL NADAL: I think the favorite of this is Federer for sure because he's the No. 1, no. But Ljubicic is playing very well so...
Q. When did you find out that you couldn't play and you were sure you couldn't do it anymore, and how disappointed you are now?
RAFAEL NADAL: Yeah, I was in Spain, in Madrid, no, when I played the third set in the final in Madrid I beginning a little bit pain.
When I finish this final, when I gonna walk, I told him, I have pain in the foot. So is very, very, a lot of inflammation in the foot after Madrid. I don't practice for one week after. The next week I was beginning very slowly every day, just playing one hour, but stop, not moving. And after I come here with the pain.
But I -- my illusion is improve the pain every day, no? But is not improving. Yesterday I feel a little bit more pain. Yesterday night I go to the hospital for some tests, and today morning, at 7 o'clock in the morning, lot of more tests, and the final decision is always my decision, no? But the doctor, the Spanish doctor, he's talking with the doctor of the tournament and with the doctors of the hospitals, and he recommend me is better don't play.
For sure I am very disappointed. It's my first Masters, and for me it was very exciting playing here as well.
Q. What is the exact nature of the injury, and how long will it take to recover, please?
DR. WINDLER: When Rafael originally injured his left foot three weeks ago, his doctor diagnosed an injury to the ligament in the middle of the foot. He had some testing done that shows that the injury is still not healed, as he mentioned, testing last night and this morning. The nature of the injury is not fully known at this point, so he'll require further testing actually when he goes back home before a decision can be made about how long it will take until it's healed and until he can play.
Q. Do you have any concern now for the Australian Open?
RAFAEL NADAL: I don't know, no. I think is not the best moment for speak about that. I hope for sure to stay in the Australian Open. I want to come to Spain. I want to have a look everything with the doctors. After that, after these tests, I will have the final resolution, no?
Q. Is it the left or the right foot?
RAFAEL NADAL: The left.
Q. Andre Agassi was in this room just a few minutes before. He talked about you. He said you put more energy than anybody in the game. Are you afraid that next year you will have to play less and maybe that means putting less energy in every point, trying to have some economy of yourself?
RAFAEL NADAL: I don't know yet. Is my first year, my first complete year in the tour. I have a speak with the doctors, and after that we will see about the schedule of the next year, no.
If the doctor say me, it's okay, is (safe?), you can play the same, I play the same. If he say I play little bit less, I play little bit less. So first I want to speak with them. .
Q. The best players out in Paris Bercy. What it means for you? What do you
think they have to change in the calendar year or, I don't know what, the schedule?
RAFAEL NADAL: I don't know. The calendar is very, very tough. We have a lot of weeks. Every match is very tough, you know, no? Every match is very tough. We need to play 100% every match. For that, you can see, no, every player is injured, you know. Federer last weeks, me in Vienna. In Madrid I can play, but is not the best thing. I can't play in Basel, in Paris. I can't play here now. Agassi is injured. Roddick, too. A lot of players is injured.
So it's very tough. It's very competitive, the tour. I don't know if we need change anything, no? But is not depends of me, no.
Q. Do you worry about next year will be a down year for you because you played too much and played too good this year, and are you going to play less tournaments next year?
RAFAEL NADAL: The same question like, what, one moment, no?
Q. I just wondered how difficult it is for a young player who obviously wants to play all the time, every week, to have to spend time sitting matches out. You know you're injured, but how frustrating is it, how tough is it for a young player who wants to play every week not to be able to play?
RAFAEL NADAL: Yeah, is not easy. I can't play every week, no, because this year I play a lot of matches. For good luck, I won a lot of matches this year. For that reason, I can't play every week, no.
So that's the reason.
Q. Twenty-five years ago you were not born, players were saying the same thing that you are saying today. The ATP came and the players were represented by the ATP and they were expecting to change things. Why you think players are unable to change things? You are young. Is difficult for you to answer. But why you think nothing is happening? Wimbledon is always close to Paris. Australian is too early after the holidays. You change surface all the time. Same problems, you weren't born, 25 years ago.
RAFAEL NADAL: For sure I think every person want to change, no? Not only the players, the ATP, everybody. But is not easy for sure, no? Is not easy change, because you have a calendar, you have a tournament, you have a lot of things, no.
But I think we will improve less - I hope.
THE MODERATOR: Less? You mean little by little.
RAFAEL NADAL: I am improving, but sometimes (smiling)...
Now we have a new president.
Q. Aside from the injury, have you enjoyed your time in Shanghai? Is there a highlight?
RAFAEL NADAL: Yeah, for sure, I have very nice room (smiling). The stadium is very nice. The organization is just unbelievable. The Chinese fans stay very good with me all the time - not only this tournament, but when I was in Beijing back in little bit months ago. I have very good feelings, too, and I enjoy a lot this week, my first Masters. Anything is new for me.
Q. Andre Agassi actually complained about the surface a little bit. You, after a couple of days of training on court, do you have any complaint about it? If so, is that one of the reasons that triggered you to pull out today?
RAFAEL NADAL: No, I don't think so. The surface, depends about the surface, no? For sure for the spectator is not the best.
THE MODERATOR: He meant that the injury, not because of the surface.