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"He's got 21 Grand Slams in his pocket, he's got nothing to prove here in Paris" - Corentin Moutet on Rafael Nadal after 2R loss at French Open

The 13-time champion in action at the 2022 French Open.
The 13-time champion in action at the 2022 French Open.
Stan

Rafael Nadal gave Corentin Moutet a claycourt lesson in the second round of the 2022 French Open on Wednesday. The 13-time champion nullified everything Moutet threw at him, eventually prevailing 6-3, 6-1, 6-4.

Speaking to the media after his defeat, Moutet was asked to assess the Spaniard's level. In response, the 23-year-old stressed that the Mallorcan will remain "the best" regardless of his performance in Paris this year.

"Well, don't worry, he's got 21 Grand Slams in his pocket, you know, he's still out there and he's got nothing to prove here in Paris to prove that he's the best," Moutet said.
πŸ—£οΈ I'm happy about a lot of things that I did tonight"No.5 @RafaelNadal speaks out after his victory over Corentin Moutet on Wednesday evening:#RolandGarros

When asked to describe his experience of playing Nadal for the first time in his career, the Frenchman explained that the Spaniard's intensity, racket-head speed, and aggression were hard to match.

"It was really intense. I had good moments, I had quite an equal game, but it was really difficult to maintain that in terms of intensity and of aggressiveness," Moutet said. "His ball is really fast, so it was really, it was a physical match, it was not that long but it was really physical.

Despite Rafael Nadal being one of Moutet's idols growing up, the 23-year-old asserted that he was determined to put his best foot forward in order to upset the legendary Spaniard.

"Well, you know, I came out to win just like any match and just wanted to use my weapons and use his weaknesses, although there aren't many, and I tried to do my best to win, but it wasn't enough today," Moutet said.

"Rafael Nadal's really powerful, and he doesn't miss anything" - Corentin Moutet

Corentin Moutet rues a missed chance against the Spaniard at the 2022 French Open.
Corentin Moutet rues a missed chance against the Spaniard at the 2022 French Open.

During the press conference, Corentin Moutet was asked to describe the quality of Rafael Nadal's strokes. Highlighting the amount of bounce the Mallorcan generates, Moutet explained how Nadal always extends the rallies with his supreme defensive skills. The Frenchman added that the Spaniard has a lot of power and rarely misses.

"It bounces really high and what's also impressive is the way he gets by defending and he always makes you play the extra shot," said the Frenchman. "And he's really powerful and he doesn't miss anything, that's really complicated and makes it really intense and physical."

Moutet was asked a couple of times if he enjoyed his match against the 13-time champion. In response, the Frenchman revealed that playing Nadal, especially at Roland Garros, had been one of his dreams.

"Well, yeah, it's the third time you've asked me the question, but, of course it was an objective for me to play against him before he retires and of course it was an objective to play against him in Roland Garros," Moutet said.

Putting aside the disappointment of the loss, the Frenchman stated that he could've never imagined that he'd get to play the Spaniard and have it broadcast on TV.

"When I started playing tennis this is something I would never have dreamt of," he added. "Of course when one starts and plays in his bedroom, you can never imagine that one day you will play and it will be broadcast on TV. So if I just sit back and put aside the fact I'm disappointed because I lost, you know, it's unbelievable to be where I'm at now."

Edited by Keshav Gopalan

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