Rafael Nadal effortlessly danced his way to a straight-sets victory over young Sebastian Korda in the fourth round of the 2020 French Open. Such was his footwork and authority that at times it seemed like the Spaniard was waltzing in a ballroom at his own merry pace and tune.
Rafael Nadal’s reflexes and quick feet were especially visible at one point in the first set when the Spaniard did a sublime 360-degree turn to return one of Korda’s shots.
The reason why Rafael Nadal was required to do a full turn (when the score was at deuce in the very first game) was that he had misjudged the flight of the ball in the windy conditions. Nevertheless, reporters at his press conference felt the urge to lighten the mood as they had seemingly run out of constructive questions.
Rafael Nadal was asked if he liked dancing off the court as well, and if yes then what form of dancing he preferred. Not one to shy away from a cheeky response, Rafael Nadal explained that it takes a ‘few shots of tequila’ to get his feet moving.
“Well, yeah with some tequilas I am dancing, yes,” Nadal said. “Without tequilas is more difficult.”
Rafael Nadal talks about adjusting to the windy conditions at Roland Garros
Continuing on a more serious note, Rafael Nadal explained that the conditions made the ball’s movement quite ‘unpredictable’. Such was the force of the wind that the players often found it difficult to keep the clay particles out of their eyes while playing.
The full effect of the windy conditions can be seen in the tweet linked below.
Rafael Nadal refused to use the wind as an excuse for anything though, and instead affirmed that a player must be prepared to deal with such a situation.
“But yeah, with these conditions out there, with that wind, it’s unpredictable what the ball can do,” Nadal explained. “So we need to be ready and just you need to be quick enough mentally and physically to have the right answer when the ball is moving every single way, no?"
At the same time, the Spaniard opined that these conditions made mistakes such as his a lot likelier.
“So just to be focused and to understand that a day like today you’re going to have mistakes,” Nadal concluded.Published 05 Oct 2020, 01:09 IST