Rafael Nadal continues his dream of winning the Grand Slam. The Spanish champion came close to retiring but won an epic match against the American Taylor Fritz, who was defeated in the decisive tie-break of the fifth set. After a few games the Spaniard had to deal with abdominal problems, a situation that reduced his performance in the serve and that created many problems for the winner of the Australian Open and the Roland Garros.
Just when everyone was thinking in a retreat or in defeat, the tenacity and strength of the champion came out. At the end of the match Rafa Nadal commented on the performance and talked about the semifinal where the Majorcan will face (barring sensational retirements) the Australian Nick Kyrgios, a great rival in the past.
Nadal's words at the conference
The twenty-two-time Grand Slam champion made the following statements at the conference: "I'm playing well, I'm having a lot of fun. The level of tennis, if we eliminate the problems, is magnificent.
Now I'm worried, but that's part of the job. Although I have struggled to play on grass in recent years, the abdominal problem is not due to playing on grass. It can happen on any surface." On the match then: "The doctor gave me anti-inflammatories.
The physiotherapist tried to relax the muscle a little, but it was difficult. You can't fix anything when you have something like that. It is not easy to leave Wimbledon, even if the pain was severe. I wanted to finish the match and that's what I did, I kept fighting.
I am proud of my fighting spirit and of having remained competitive in these conditions." Rafa tried to clarify his physical problems: "I'll do more exams, but it's hard to say. I'm not the typical player who has had almost no injuries in his career.
I'm used to dealing with pain and playing with problems. When I feel something similar to what I have felt, it is because there is something wrong with my abdominal muscles."