Rafa Nadal made a superhuman effort to try to lift the final of the Masters 1,000 in Indian Wells . He fought to the end and fell honorably to Taylor Fritz . Chest pain prevented him from displaying his best version, although that did not prevent him from fighting like a titan until the last ball. The Spaniard expressed his concern about the pain in the post-match press conference, admitting that he does not know what it is exactly but that “it was difficult for me to breathe.”
The Balearic tennis player explained that the pain began after the match against Alcaraz : “It happened last night, at the end of the match. I finished late yesterday and played during the day. As you can imagine, I didn’t get a chance to do much, not even check what was going on there. That’s it. All I can say is that it was hard for me to breathe . I don’t know, when I try to breathe, it hurts and it’s very uncomfortable.”
“I was in pain, honestly. Like I said, I’m having trouble breathing . I don’t know if it’s something in the ribs, I don’t know yet. When I breathe, when I move, it’s like I have a needle in here all the time. I get a little dizzy because it’s painful. It is a type of pain that limits me a lot. It’s not just about the pain, I don’t feel very good because it affects my breathing. More than sad about the loss, something I accepted immediately, and even before the match was over, it’s more that I’m suffering a bit, really. But that’s all, although I think this is not the time to talk about it. Even though it’s obvious that I couldn’t do normal things today… That’s all. It was a final and I tried. I lost against a great player. I think this is not the day to talk about what is happening to me. It’s your day. There is no need to hide that in my comments,” he added.
Nadal fought until the end, as usual, but the pain limited him a lot and he did not have his day. “I do the best I can. That yes, it has not been my day. But that happens. I have experience in all these situations. So it is difficult to play a final like this. I tried until the end. That’s it. I even had my chances in the second set, I didn’t convert too many. That’s it. I think it’s a difficult game for me to analyze personally because I couldn’t do many things. It is a great victory for him. First Masters 1,000. Great day. I just hope you enjoy it. Wish you all the best”.
However, Rafa did not want to detract from Fritz’s victory and congratulated the Californian tennis player for his victory and for the tennis displayed throughout the match. “Well, it’s been a tough day. I congratulate Fritz. In the end that is the main thing in tennis, that there is a winner and a loser. Today the winner is him. He deserves it. He played aggressive, well, so congratulations.”
“I couldn’t compete”
This loss ended his 20-match winning streak. Nadal, who has returned to number three in the world this Monday, acknowledged that “he wanted to make it perfect before the earth” but it could not be. Between the problems and an intractable Fritz they prevented him from keeping his unbeaten streak intact. “These weeks have been very, very, very beautiful. I’m sad because I couldn’t compete. It’s hard to have these feelings any day, but in a final it’s very, very ugly. In sport you have to talk about the past, you have to talk about today. And today is a difficult day for me, hard.
«Now I am sad, but I am not a person who goes down or up a lot emotionally depending on the moment. I’m usually stable, I put everything in perspective. Of course, the last two months I’ve been here have been incredible, unforgettable, very emotional. I enjoy things that I never thought I could experience again a few months ago. It has been amazing. Now is the time to try to solve this problem as soon as possible, try to start on clay. Another part of the season begins that I enjoy. Of course, each event is very special to me. I hope to be ready. What worries me now is what is happening to me, what I have to do now to recover and how long it will take me, “he concluded.