Friday, 16 April 2021 01:01 GMT

Following success in Abu Dhabi Nadal focused on Qatar


(MENAFN - The Peninsula)

Q. What’s going through your mind? What are your hopes in 2016.

Rafael Nadal: The fact is this is an Olympic year. When the Olympics arrive I will try to be ready for it but for the moment that’s the normal ATP calendar. I am focused on it for sure. The motivation to play Olympics will be amazing but for the moment I am focused on Qatar now. I played well in Abu Dhabi last week. I am practicing well. We start these two days with that wind but I feel ready for the new season. But the expectations are normal ones positive ones because I feel that I finished the past season playing well and I feel that I am playing well again. We’ll see.

Q. If you compare the first week of this year to the first week of last year what is the difference in your mood?

Nadal: Well it is obvious that I feel more confidant this year but anything can happen. This is the sport. Last year I played a great set here in the first round but I lost. But I was playing good no? And (despite not) having an easy year I managed it well because I finished in high position in rankings. I finished playing well. This year is another year. It’s true I’m not coming back from injuries and I feel that I worked a lot to be ready for the beginning of this one. But I have said before: anything can happen.

Q. You have been training very hard during the off-season. Can you talk a little bit about your training?

Nadal: I have been training as much as we believe we needed and that’s it. We worked hard. We worked harder than usual because the physical condition allows me to do it and that’s important for me. I feel that I worked well. Didn’t stop much this year. That helps too when you don’t lose the condition and I played in IPTL. For me it was great because it was a great week of practice and at the same time and competing a little bit too. (After IPTL) I was back in Spain and I had João Sousa come to Mallorca for practice. We practiced very hard and then I started in Abu Dhabi playing well again.

Q. Along with Roger you’re one of the most popular players on the tour. Does fan support motivate you encourage you or put more pressure on you?

Nadal: All support is very welcome. I get that support from the fans around the world. I still feel this and that’s very important. That’s always important when you feel the fans behind you are supporting you. It gives you great energy. So I just feel great with that and I just (want to) thank everybody around the world for that.


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