Rafael Nadal showed some signs of weakness in his first two matches at Wimbledon. The Spanish champion left a set to both Francisco Cerundolo and Ricardas Berankis, making an unusual number of gratuitous mistakes and showing a poor feeling with the surface.
The former world number 1 has not triumphed at Church Road since 2010, while his last appearance in the final dates back to 2011. The 36-year-old from Manacor wasn't sure he was going to participate in the Championships, but the new treatment with Dr.
Cotorro allowed him to ease the pain in his foot. The Iberian has won two majors this year, leaving everyone speechless at both the Australian Open and Roland Garros. Rafa thus moved to +2 over Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic in the all-time Grand Slam ranking.
The next obstacle in his path will be the Italian Lorenzo Sonego, author of an excellent performance against the French Gaston. To Eurosport microphones, Mats Wilander analyzed in detail Nadal's performance on the London lawns.
Wilander reflects on Nadal
If he has shown some signs of weakness since the start of the fortnight, and has been taken twice in the fourth set, Rafael Nadal is indeed present, qualified for the 3rd round of Wimbledon, three years after his last appearance on the London turf.
Mats Wilander, Eurosport UK consultant, expressed his admiration for the Mallorcan, additionally embarrassed by some physical glitches, especially in the abs. “There were years when he couldn't play at Wimbledon, but he always came back.
The consistency of Roger, Rafa and Novak in Grand Slam tournaments is simply amazing. He's 36, he's got this stripe on his abs, he's got a foot problem, and he's still winning matches on probably his worst surface in many ways, even though he's won more titles at Wimbledon than at the Australian Open (2 and 2 in reality, editor's note).
This is a testament to Rafa Nadal's consistency. Especially on grass, I think the lower ranked players think they have a small chance of beating the greatest of all time,” said the Swede. When asked if he fears his fears about his retirement, the 22-time Grand Slam champion responded by saying, “It’s something that I am not… I never had fear about that day.
I think I am happy that I had a very happy life outside of tennis, even if tennis is a very important part of my life for the last 30 years”.