The Championships Wimbledon
Tuesday, 24 June 2008
at Wimbledon, England
Rafael Nadal def. Andreas Beck 6‑4, 6‑4, 7‑6
Q. A great serving performance today. No breakpoints to face. Can
we talk a little bit about how you've gone about improving your serve
over the last three years. For example, did you use electronic equipment
to look at your service motion, freeze frame, where your feet or arm was
in a particular situation, or was it just a matter of hitting more and
RAFAEL NADAL: Well, yeah, today I served well. Second record aces. I
had 18 two years ago against Agassi here, and today 17. So happy with my
I improve because I am young and I must improve. I practice for
improve always. Every day, every month. My goal always is be better
player, so for that reason I improved a little bit my serve.
Q. How important is that at Wimbledon? How important is it to have
a better serve at Wimbledon?
RAFAEL NADAL: It's important in every surface. Probably in clay a
little bit less important. But every surface it's very important have a
good serve, no? In grass is very, very important, too.
So, yeah, right now I happy about how I serve today and the way I was
serving today. But, you know, is only the first match. I have to
Q. How much of a better player do you feel you are on grass
compared to last year?
RAFAEL NADAL: I don't know. I really don't know, no? Everybody ask me
the same. Last two years I played the final in Wimbledon, so is very,
very difficult say I am better player. I don't know if I am better
player, especially because I didn't play on grass ‑ only one tournament.
In my opinion, I am more complete player because I have more options
to do, no? But I don't know if I am better player or not on grass. I
think in general, yes.
Q. The new rule about having only one person with you in the
locker room here, how are you adjusting to that? Is it your uncle who
comes with you in the locker room or the trainer?
RAFAEL NADAL: The coach. Toni is coming to the locker room. Sometimes
I have problems. Is a little bit a strange rule, no? The tournament have
to change, in my opinion. In my humble opinion, the tournament have to
change that, no?
Because if we travel with one physio, the physio has to be before the
match on the locker room to do the tapes for everything, no? And, well,
here the people who manage the locker room, the persons inside the
locker room, they are very nice.
When I have a problem they go and bring my physio, my trainer,
inside. So today was perfect because they did that for me. So only can
say thank you very much.
Q. I noticed you're wearing tapes around the bottom of your knees.
Do you have a problem with your knees, or is it to prevent a problem?
RAFAEL NADAL: No. If you saw me play, I played always like this, no?
Q. With the tapes around?
RAFAEL NADAL: Yes.
Q. The Spanish football team, they went through after a penalty.
How nerve‑wracking was that?
RAFAEL NADAL: I think the same like everybody, no? A lot of nervous.
So we finish the match jumping, everybody. So was very, very important
for us be in the semifinal.
But right now I think we have to continuing.
Q. We know you're a very good player on grass. How do you explain
the rest of the Spaniards right now, their play on grass?
RAFAEL NADAL: They play good, but not only right now. They play good
in the past. Ferrero made quarterfinal here last year. Ferrer fourth
round, not last year, two years ago. Verdasco the same. Good chances for
being in quarterfinals. I think is nothing new, no?
Q. Do you think some of the former players that were top ranked
that didn't play Wimbledon, was that a mistake?
RAFAEL NADAL: In the past?
Q. Like Corretja, Bruguera, these players that often skipped
RAFAEL NADAL: Well, it was different moment. I am not one for say is
mistake because they know ‑‑ well, everybody knows more than others how
(speaking in Spanish).
THE INTERPRETER: They know themselves better than everybody else.
RAFAEL NADAL: I think in the past, I don't know if the ranking was
zero if you didn't come here. I didn't know exactly how working. I never
going to do something like this. I love play here.
Q. Would you like an early game on Thursday so you can get to the
watch the football?
RAFAEL NADAL: I hope so (smiling).
Q. Do you feel confident for first round to go through next round
and so on? Was it good for you?
RAFAEL NADAL: I have a difficult draw. I gonna play against very
tough opponent, one of the worst opponent who I can play in the second
round, being the No. 2 seeded.
Well, Gulbis is a good player. Very aggressive player. Very good
serve. He play very aggressive with amazing forehand. He's very young,
Q. When you're serving this well, does it put you in a different
mentality, the same mentality that Andy Roddick had or Pete Sampras had,
that all you have to do is take care of your serve and you win?
RAFAEL NADAL: Not yet. Not yet, no.
Q. Did you hear the person shout 911 when there was an emergency
and somebody fell? Did it affect you at all?
RAFAEL NADAL: I didn't know, but I listen, Code 911. I didn't know.
Q. I was wondering if it changed your focus at all.
RAFAEL NADAL: No. I saw everybody looks someplace, but I don't know.
The true, I didn't.
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