Rafael Nadal began his French Open 2020 campaign by defeating Egor Gerasimov in straight sets in the first round. The victory came on the prestigious Philippe-Chatrier court, which has been a magical stadium for World No. 2. At the press conference, Nadal was asked how he had felt walking down on Philippe-Chatrier and how he is dealing with the different conditions.
“Well, it is one of a kind court. Everything, I have lived here has become an important part of my life as an athlete. Perhaps the most important. But, it’s sad living a tournament in these conditions,” Nadal said in the press conference.
Built in 1928, the Philippe-Chatrier Court is named after the former FFT President, Philippe Chatrier. The court can accommodate a total of 15,225 spectators. It has clearly been special for Nadal who has won 12 French Open titles.
However, the current atmosphere, or lack of it, saddens Rafa. The Spaniard also expressed his sorrow at having to play while the world suffers.
“Clearly, the feeling is more sad than usual. Maybe, that’s what it needs to feel like. It needs to be sad. Many people in the world are suffering. We can be only thankful that Roland Garros and other events are doing their best,” added the new ambassador of Mallorca Food Bank.
The Roland Garros usually takes place in late May and early June. This time, due to the coronavirus pandemic, it is taking place in late September and early October. The conditions are comparatively much colder and slower. This will certainly not benefit an attacking tennis player like Nadal.
He is definitely not happy with the conditions. But in spite of it, he is ready for the battle. After all, the French Open is Nadal’s cave. His record at the Grand Slam speaks for itself.
After answering the question, Nadal thanked the ATP and all the Grand Slams’ management for organizing events at such a time.
“These (tournaments) generate money for many people who otherwise would be struggling. So, we can be thankful to ATP and other Grand Slams for doing what they can to achieve this. So we can do our best each day, that’s what I try to do,” concluded Nadal.
Rafael Nadal will next face Mackenzie McDonald in the second round. Fans expect him to see more of him, especially after the humiliating defeat against Diego Schwartzman at the Italian Open 2020. Will Nadal be able to turn all the odds and win his 13th French Open title?