Rafa’s new blog and Q&A are up. First, the blog:
Let me start by saying that I played really bad today. Having said that, I always had a so, so start here in Roland Garros and 4 times went well in the end… It is funny but I have been practicing really great these days, I have been playing well at the previous events and I am felling great. Then I stepped out on the court, first round and… I played terrible. I really don’t know the reason. I have been asked if that worries me and i have to say that it really doesn’t… for the moment. I hope that on Thursday things will be better. I was really angry for my game today.
That poor elliptical machine…
I also would like to say that some people, specially media, asked me about being put to play on the second court. To be honest I think it is normal I played there my first match. It was not against me, I know that. It is normal that if I am playing with a young player like Gianni, they put us on that court. The pressure for him was less and it is a good way to protect him and get him better from the start. No worries as they say in Australia… (I learned that!).
So pfffft to all the conspiracy theorists. I love how excited he sounds about learning “no worries.”
Now, the Q&A
What one song would you like to sing in the Karaoke Booth at Roland Garros this year? – Dustin, USA
Rafa: I am thinking about it. If Marc Lopez does it with me, I’ll do it. otherwise I’ll simply introduce Novak singing Gypsy… :-)
Rafa/Marc! duet? Oh please, please, please, please…it must happen.
I’m learning to drive at the moment, although I don’t think I’ll have an Aston Martin when I pass! How old were you when you started having lessons, and did you pass first time? – Shani.
Rafa: I didn’t learn with an Aston Martin either. It was a Kia which, by the way, I still have and use… I started later than normal, the contrary to my tennis…
Let’s see…two part question, one answer. *check!*
In one week from today I will have surgery on my knee. Do you have some good advice for me on what to do to recover quickly so that I will be able to return to the tennis courts as soon as possible? I miss playing tennis so much. Thanks! – Anna (Netherlands)
Rafa: You should definitely listen to what you doctor say and not my case. You should take care of your self before running again with a racquet in your hands… Try to avoid injuries that will come back!
You hear that An? Dr. Rafa has spoken.
Do you eat more and different food before a five-set match and how long before the match do you have a meal? Isn’t it difficult sometimes to judge correctly when the match before yours is much longer or shorter than expected? – Cheryl Klopper
Rafa: No, not really. I eat the normal food. Otherwise it would be too heavy. To answer your second part of the question, yes, sometimes it is difficult if there is not a fixed time.
“To answer your second part…” *shock!!!!*
I love watching you play tennis and particularly love it when you are pumped up. My question is when you watch your games back and see your amazing ‘vamos’ and fist-pumping gestures do you ever laugh at yourself, or what do you think? Good luck for the tournament! – Sharon Davies
Rafa: Many thanks. Sometimes I have to admit I do… Funny. But I know the moment and know that that really helps me.
You know what I’d love to do? I’d love to watch his face as he watches the ’08 Wimbledon final. That’s not creepy, right? It would just be interesting…
It’s great to see you back at your best! As I know you’re an avid Real Madrid fan, what do you think of Jose Mourinho’s move to Real Madrid? Do you think he can bring Real the same success Barca has had in La Liga and the Champions League over the past few years? Also, what do you think of Spain’s chances at the World Cup? – Joanna, Sydney
Rafa: Many thanks. I better keep my thoughts for myself. I just hope that Real wins next year… :-) and regarding Spain, I truly think we have some good chances but we will see. I’ll tell you more during Wimbledon and how things go.
Footie question? *check!*
I know you’re a big Phantom fan so was wondering whether you’ve seen the new sequel, Love Never Dies, yet. If not, do you plan to when you’re next in London? Can’t wait to see you at Queen’s and Wimbledon – you are awesome. – Rachel.
Rafa: No, I haven’t. But thanks for the tip. Maybe I’ll come during Queen’s.
Not touching that one.
If you were to play mixed doubles, which WTA player would you like to play with? – Atch
Rafa: I really don’t have time so I don’t think about it. Sorry… :-(
Sorry Atch…but that means the position is still open if you lobby for it.
Hi Rafa, I’m watching the 2006 French Open men’s final between you and Roger right now and I was wondering if you ever watch old matches for motivation or to see if you should change anything about your game? Thanks! – Lisa, USA
Rafa: Yes I do. Not for motivation but to see the tactics and remember things. Clearly I will try to adapt and change what needed if possible.
So he doesn’t stare at himself longingly? Guess that’s just us. Oh, and we analyze how far his game has come along. That too.