When Rafael Nadal was replaced by Feliciano Lopez to play the first singles rubber on Friday, against Ramkumar Ramanathan, speculations ran amok that there was something seriously wrong with the world no. 4. And when reasons for his absence came forth, both from Lopez and Conchita Martinez – in their respective press conferences – the contradictory answers fuelled the doubts further instead of assuaging them.
When Nadal played the doubles tie with Marc Lopez that eventually saw Spain move into the World Group, after a four-set win over the Indian team of Leander Paes and Saketh Myneni, the question came to be answered decisively by the man himself in the Spanish team’s post-match press conference.
“It was not the wrist, no,” clarified Rafa, when asked to elaborate on the contradiction that had inadvertently emerged. “I have been honest about my wrist and (it) is true (it) is in the process (that it) is improving as I said at the US Open (it) is still bothering me a little bit but the process is a positive one.
(It) is the right one so very happy that the wrist is improving.” He went on to add that after the practice on Friday he’d started to feel a little uncomfortable and added, “Feli was right there on the court and he did a great job.” Given the way Nadal played during the double tie, with several scintillating shots coming forth from his forehand the wrist didn’t seem to be the problem at all.
And overall it was a job perfectly executed by the five-time former champions, who whitewashed India 5-0 and who will be featuring in the World Group again after a noticeable absence for their stature. Also Read David Ferrer: The Subtle Enforcer