Article about Rafa’s love of Davis Cup – including an audio interview clip.
Although Nadal played in the 2004 Final, he was also present at Spain’s first Davis Cup triumph. The location was the same as this year – Palau Sant Jordi in Barcelona – and the future world No. 1, then aged just 14, carried his nation’s flag.
“I was there in 2000 when they won. I had the flag, but this year I hope I will be there playing,” said Nadal. “It’s always an advantage to play at home but the Czechs are very good players on clay too.”
Nadal’s debut for Spain, back in 2004, was coincidentally against Czech Republic. Having lost the opening rubber, the only singles defeat of his Davis Cup career, he bounced back to defeat Radek Stepanek in the deciding fifth match.
“It was against the Czechs that I played my first time in Davis Cup so to play against the Czechs at home is going to be special,” said Nadal. “They have a very good team, good doubles, very good two singles. Every point is going to be very difficult.”