Rafael Nadal will have to continue to wait for his first major title at the deep end of the season. Nadal’s woes in the Rolex Paris Masters and on indoor hard-courts continued with a 6-4, 7-5 loss to big-striking Alexander Zverev in the Rolex Paris Masters 2020 semi-finals. Nadal himself assessed why he is yet to win a title on the Parisian hard-courts.
While it is known that the conditions are his least favored, Nadal also does not play any indoor hard-court events until Paris-Bercy.
“Why I never won here in Paris? The surface is difficult. Generally, it’s my first tournament indoor,” Nadal said after his loss on Saturday.
The 34-year-old’s wait to tie Novak Djokovic‘s tally of 36 Masters 1000 titles also continues. And Nadal admitted that he is expected to win a Masters 100 title, more often than not. “But you can’t say it’s not normal that I don’t win a Masters 1000,” Nadal expressed.
As he often does in defeat, Nadal praised his opponent who was simply better than him on the day. “Here you have the best players in the world. And there’s no point in losing when the opponent is better,” the Spanish legend said.
A trophy-less drought makes it seem like Nadal always struggles at the event. However, he has made at least the quarter-finals each time he has played the tournament. Nadal’s first appearance resulted in an appearance in the final where he lost to David Nalbandian in 2007.
Nadal has not consistently played the event, but three semi-finals and two quarter-finals, apart from a final, is something he can take confidence from.
Nadal now heads to another major indoor hard-court event that he has not won. At Paris-Bercy, Nadal has struggled against the top players in the latter stages of the tournament. The ATP Finals will be all about the same.
The top-8 players in the world will face off in London next week. Things will not get easier for Nadal there. But if he can make it through the round-robin stage, expect Nadal to up the ante as he chases a maiden title in London.