Nadal all class after Open defeat, rejects Djokovic’s complaints
Wednesday - 17/02/2021 16:20
Rafael Nadal was all class after his exit from the Australian Open, making no excuse and rejecting Novak Djokovic’s recent complaints.
Spanish great Rafael Nadal said he wouldn’t blame quarantine or look for other excuses on Wednesday night after his Grand Slam record bid was torpedoed by an inspired Stefanos Tsitsipas at the Australian Open.
But he refused to blame the unusual build-up to the coronavirus-disrupted Grand Slam for his surprise defeat.
“We can find excuses or reasons, or maybe this quarantine that we need to be more time in the room than usual,” he said.
“But I’m not the guy that’s going to find excuses on that or going to complain about what happened, no.
“Just accept. I never considered myself an unlucky person at all. Doesn’t matter the injuries that I had. I think I am a very lucky person.
“The only thing that I can do is just keep going. I put myself in a position, even with the challenges that I faced, to be in the quarterfinals, two sets up, close to being in the semi-finals. So a chance lost? Yes. But life continues. I hope to keep having chances and I’m going to keep fighting for it.”
NADAL REJECTS DJOKER’S COMPLAINTS
Defending champion Novak Djokovic and Alexander Zverev both hit out at quarantine after their quarter-final on Tuesday, blaming it for a rash of early-season injuries.
“What we are seeing is not normal. It’s not something we are used to,” Djokovic said.
“Top players are the ones that are fittest. It has been proven in the past that that’s the case. Now you have Berrettini, even Rafa coming in with a back injury, myself, Sascha, as well, struggled, Dimitrov.
“I mean, obviously it has something to do with these kind of circumstances that we were in.”
“Talking to a lot of players, majority of the players just don’t want to go ahead with the season if we are going to have to quarantine most of the tournaments,” he warned.
“So this is something that should be discussed, like as of now.”
But Nadal dismissed talk of halting the tour, or playing it in a series of “bubbles” to avoid further stints in quarantine, as suggested by Djokovic.
“There are two options: stop the tour or keep going,” he said. “It’s tough for the players, of course … but on the other hand, if we stop the tour, why and how and when we will be able to come back? And a lot of jobs gonna suffer a lot.”
Nadal added: “We need to think a little bit bigger … we need to find solutions and we need to adapt to this very tough times that we are facing.”