Paris: Semi presser

Photo by JACQUES DEMARTHON/AFP/Getty Images

Photo by JACQUES DEMARTHON/AFP/Getty Images

Audio from the presser can be found here.

30 Responses

  1. nic says:

    Thanks Miri, that was fast! Good to hear what he said. Makes me feel better. He seemed pleased with how he played, knowing that Nole was just too good today to beat. Ok then, on to the WTF next week. I’m happy that he’s going back to Mallorca. Was wondering what his plans were. Will be good for him to go home, regroup, practice hard in his backyard, then reset to go back to London. Take care Rafa xxx

  2. Atch2 says:

    Mallorca does sound like a good plan :) at least it shld b warmer. & his thoughts r the same as ours. Nole playd unbelievably, he didn’t play bad but didn’t hve a lot of chances cos almost everythg Nole hit was a winner. Feel sorry 4 he guy that has 2 play Nole 2morw.

  3. Rafangel says:

    Aww, that’s our man. All’s (nearly) right with the world.

  4. Rafafan says:

    Not sure why he should really go back to Majorca to practice! The courts are different and to me it sounds like he needs to pracitce on fast indoor courts like Paris or at the 02 – so why not actually do it. The whole point is that he is “ordinary” on fast courts, or shall i say that it is his least favourable surface and because of that he needs to practice on the very same surface. Not go back to sunny majorca in the comfort of his own home practicing on courts that he won’t be playing on…grrrrr….I hope Rafa wakes up. He looked rather subdued and sleepy today, no idea what to do. He had the chance to win this and be 350 points behind Fed – lost chance.

    • Debbie says:

      I agree- the courts in Mallorca are very different-he said so himself. BUT, he did say he was going home and then to London. He may be heading to London sooner than we think for practice.

  5. Elene says:

    another side of Rafa i appreciate is that he ‘s always ready to recognize his opponent’s play to the extent it deserves ..and does it in an affectionate way without slightest trace of “black’ envy.

  6. patzin says:

    I think that Davis Cup on clay is more important to him than London, with a surface that is not his favorite. In that sense, going home is ideal to get some clay court practice time in before Davis Cup.

    • miri says:

      It’s not like he doesn’t have access to hard indoor courts in Manacor. We saw video of him practicing on one before Paris.

      • Rafafan says:

        Yes Miri but they are not the same fast hard court indoor courts. They were saying that the players at the 02 will get the River boat and practice at Barons Court and they have made the courts exactly the same condition as if they were playing at the 02 to help with their practice! – So why doesn’t the f… he do that instead of returning to his homeland and thinking of Dc. He also needs to get used to the cold here, atmosphere etc. etc.

        Practice in Majorca is a waste of time I think and needs to do it at where he is meant to be playing. No good one or two days before the event.

        • Delta says:

          Si Rafafan, but wants to see his famalia, regain his confidence and like Miri said he does practise on hard courts there, which are indoors. Maybe the weather isn’t as damp as London, but should have no bearing, no? Plus the weather in Manacor isn’t exactly “balmy” this time of year. Next few days are in the 60’sF, 66 F w/fog early AM/PM w/ 100% humidity, granted warm to some in UK, but to him rather on the “cool side,” don’t think will be problemo’. It is a questionable debate though to most as less travel time if went straight from Paris. Time will tell…………

  7. allyS says:

    if he is not playing bad and still lost with such results,i am very scared. but i think he played bad, he has not found his form ever since his injury

    • An says:

      I agree that he has not found his form jet since his injury, that takes time. But i do not agree that he played bad! He could have done yes, but Nole just didnt let him play yesterday and then you never get into youre rythem and the match is over before you know it!

      Have you ever had the feeling to play an opponent that hits evrything right? Or had you ever had the feeling that you played a match in wich evrything works out the way you wanted it?
      If so you must know that if one off this things is the case you can even winn or lose against an opponent you normaly dont winn of lose against!

      And we have to face the fact that Rafa is and always has bin more human on super fast hardcourts, i have never bin to Paris Bercy live so i cannot tell you how fast the court realy is but i believe Rafa when he says its super fast… ( i’ve bin to Rotterdam this year almost evry day and let me say: that indoor hardcourt is the fastest court i ever saw in my life! ) Rafa struggles more on that kind of courts because he has to adjust his game and he told us more then once that you can not just change youre game completly depending on wich court to play on, you can try to make some changes but youre game is youre game and Rafa’s is the most effective on clay!

      My last point, when Rafa says he wasnt playing bad i think we can’t say that he was. If he was he says so himself ( see the interview after the 1st match )… So who are we to know better then Rafa himself?

  8. Emma says:

    I am interested in the surfrace comment. I know it’s always an issue, but it hasn’t stopped him fighting before; he hasn’t just sat there and taken it.

    If it’s true that it is a surfrace issue, and that he is focussed on the Davis Cup, then I want to see if the old Rafa returns on the clay at Barca. If he doesn’t, or there aren’t substantial flashes of him, then I am am going to get seriously seriously concerned (I mean I already am to be honest, but need a plan not to be).

    • An says:

      I’m not concerned at all!
      Won’t even be if we not see vintage Rafa on the clay courts in DC final. He cannot always be in the form he was in 2008, whit all athletes form goes up and down….

      I would be concerned if Rafa was loosing evry tournament he entered in 1st or 2nd rounds, but he isn’t, he is reaching semi-finals and finals all the time ( on a surfrace that has never bin his best ) that tells me his basic form is pretty much enough to beat almost evry other player out there he needs his best form to beat guys in the top 10, we saw a flash off that in his match against Tsonga….

      Then he loses, not playing bad, to a guy that played the best match ever against him, well what telss that about our Rafa, nothing!
      Nole wasn’t beatable yesterday, not by Rafa, not by anny other player on the tour because he simply did not let the other player play.

      I’m pretty sure Rafa can find back his form from 2008 some day again, but there will be another time that he loses it again too.
      That was his best form (and he spoiled us rotten with it) and you simply cannot always play youre best level, no one can!
      As long as youre basic level is enough to reach deep in torunaments, one day its going to click again for you and then you winn it!

      • CC says:

        Thanks An, that was very well said.

        I’m really looking forward to London now. Just hope Rafa brings his wellies and souwester as it’s pretty miserable here at the moment. ;)

        • An says:

          I’m sure he will be prepared for London!

          • CC says:

            Yep, with wellies and anything else made from rubber that he thinks might be useful, if you know what I mean… ;)

          • nic says:

            Yeah, thanks for that An. I love your positivity and the perspective from which you see Rafa’s situation. You’re right, he had such a great year last year, it’s really hard to expect to see that again, especially after the year he’s had. And he is making it deep into the tourneys since his comeback, that says alot. We just have to be patient and give it time, when it clicks, it will be super. I really saw it click during that match with Tsonga though. That gives me a lot of hope. Love the guy!

            • An says:

              “if you know what I mean… ;)”
              CC, i know exactly what you mean and you understood what i ment perfectly too ;)

              Thank you Nic. I guess i am lucky to always see things from a positive perspective! I do think we help Rafa most wit believing in him.
              Also absolutlu love him!

          • Atch2 says:

            An, thanks fm me as well for your positive and insightful words. I really agree and believe in what you are saying.

            I can understand some of us may question why Rafa doesn’t go straight to London to get use to the courts and the conditions, but that’s how Rafa’s always been. Whether he’s going home to celebrate after a win or after a loss, home is where his heart is. Like he said he is not a machine, and home is where he gets back to reality and he can get reenergized again and refocus.

            Allys I think the standard/goal we judge Rafa by is different to what he has set for himself. Our ultimate goal for Rafa is to win the tournament but he may have set different benchmarks, e.g., get X% first serves, maximum X unforced per set, more net approaches, go further than Qtrs last yr, etc. So when Rafa says he doesn’t think he was playing badly, he might have meant that he met his personals goals for the match already.

            And Rafa made it to the semis of another Masters, working hard for every match without the help of anyone retiring on him. Ideal semis is seeds 1&4 and 2&3 are in play. Rafa did great to get to the semi and play Nole. The other half of the draw is another story.

            Fed had a bad yr in 08 and he eventually got his form back next yr. Rafa’s a fighter and he will keep trying and improving until he is back on top.

            One week for me to sleep normally and recover before London play starts.

      • Carol says:

        thanks for your great bottom-line sense!! *hugs*

      • Ch F says:

        What you’re saying makes perfect sense and I really want to see it that way. When Federer had a bad year and came back he was not in his greatest form ever, but his will to stay in the game in a competitive way made him develop his play in a way that allowed him to outplay his opponents. Serving better, attacking to finish the point earlier, good strategy, using his best characteristics to put pressure and hiding his weaknesses. What I fear is whether Rafa wants to accept there is some change to be made and if he wants to build on the experience he now has. He seems to think if he can’t win the way he played before his injuries, well that’s too bad. There is a lot of mind power and will involved in trying to understand what is to be done to stay on top and be able to win against top players.
        Nobody questions his basic level to reach deep in tournaments-although he almost lost to Almagro-but whether he’s confident enough to win a title. Of course he can reach the semis, the thing is what happens then. He needs to be determined. If he is, he’ll be back on top. Of course we can’t expect him to be in his top form always, but he needs to adjust to stay on top. Will he? I really hope he does. Don’t take me wrong, it’s not that I don’t believe in him anymore, I just think there’s a struggle inside him causing him not to believe in himself. He has to cover a lot of ground mentally. This isn’t a question of form anymore. Look at what happened just now. Monfils was down 3-0 at the second set and put up a fight. And of course Djokovic lost his focus. Is he fitter than Rafa? No. Is he a better player? No. If he could do it, Rafa could as well. It’s just he didn’t believe in it at all. And that’s the problem. Will that change? I certainly hope so, cause Rafa deserves a lot better.

        • Emma says:

          I think that’s exactly where I am coming from. It isn’t that I don’t think he’s terrific or believe in him anymore – a million miles from it else I wouldn’t be posting anguished messages on here. I will carry on forever sky plussing horus of footage and watching it God knows when as everyone on here is doing.

          I just think something undefinable is wrong, and feel like it’s not progressing to be sorted. I think you are right and it is to do with belief. It just doesn’t seem to be like Rafa not to be trying – and if he was really trying in that match like he can try, then I missed it.

          • An says:

            Realy girls i think you are over-reacting! I perfectly understand that you do it out of love and worry’s for our Rafa, but still…

            We just need to be patient! Remember only in the beginning off 2008 Rafa had a long period without winning tournaments too…. and then at one moment, it was all there, he got on a fantastic roll and won evrything he entered and i repeat with doing that he spoiled us! Now he’s had a tough year, he just is picking up play on a part off the season that never was his best ( because off the surfrace wich does suite his game the least ). I agree that it has evrything to do with his believe, but the Rafa that gave us that amazing results in 2008 is still there, its all inside him but at this moment it doesnt click and come out. I said it earlyer this week, in his head, he is accepting the rest off this year as it comes ( not meaning that he doesnt do his best to winn matches ) and sets his focus on the DC final and then 2010 and thats what is different from the Rafa we know who always refused to look further then his next match but i think its logical given the year he had to endure. For me that, and only that is the explanation for what you girls are signaling and i’m pretty sure as from the DC final and starting 2010 we’ll see back a fully focused and concentrated on his next match only Rafa, i mean come-on we are talking about the most mentally tough and willing to fight guy out there! Also why are we suddenly doubting his will to improve? He always is trying to improve, always telling us that that is the most important and always showed us that he can do just that, but its a process that comes slowly and takes time! Why are we suddenly suggesting that there should be problems with him wich he doesnt tell us about? I truely think he would be verry dissapointed if he knew his fans where thinking that way!

            I still am convinced that it will click eventually again and that we aint seen the best of our Rafa jet!

            • Ch F says:

              Hello An! I agree that the Rafa we know will have all the will in the world, but people do change and their mentality does get tested. It happens to everyone. If he still has the same level of will and determination, I totally agree he’ll be back better than ever. I repeat, I don’t question that any more than he does. I really hope it’s in there somewhere. And I have all the patience in the world, I can wait forever to see that again! Thanks for the comment ;-)

              • An says:

                Well we just have to wait and see what happens, No?;)

                • Emma says:

                  I really hope you are right, it all makes alot of sense about the time of year and the surfraces, and I so want it to all work out for him.

                  Just with regard to why I think there could be more going on that he isn’t telling us about (which I recognise is totally his priority) – I think I got a bit burned by the whole knee thing which he denied time and again until he went crashing out in the FO. I remember knowing damn well something was seriously wrong back in Miami in the Delps match (and subsequently), but when he was asked about it he said everything was fine, and we got nothing solid about the knees till he pulled out of Queens.

                  I know he had no choice but to do this and appreciate it was the best thing to do, but it’s made me a bit paranoid.

  9. Nana says:

    Federer did an interview with the Times and talks a bit about Rafa.

    And yes, after AO09 everyone said Fed was finished. Then within a few months he was hailed as the GOAT. I’m sure Rafa has the will power and the talent to turn things around as well. It won’t be an easy path but let’s have faith in him.

    http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/sport/columnists/paul_kimmage/article6917213.ece

    • mary says:

      Thanks for the link Nana but can’t come to read anything that comes out of Feds’ mouth anymore. But I do agree that we need to take into account Rafa is only 23!
      He’s had a serious knee problem, which he will always have to take precautions for. He had that 2 cm tear in his ab (now that must have been fun to play with}. So he has had a lot to contend with among personal upheavals.
      Rafa has moved on mow & is trying to regain his mojo. In time I believe he will as you say Nana turn things around. He is at that threshold now.
      I have total faith & I’m probably a dreamer as well, but I don’t give a rats a…. All I know is that I believe in him!!!