'Maybe when Rafael Nadal trains, I can see...', says former No. 1

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'Maybe when Rafael Nadal trains, I can see...', says former No. 1

Rafael Nadal's debut match at the Australian Open 2021 lasted just under two hours. The Majorcan got rid of the Serbian Laslo Djere with a score of 6-3 6-4 6-1 without too many problems. A clear and convincing victory useful for the Spaniard to break the ice and become familiar with the Rod Laver Arena.

Nadal always starts strong under pressure and thus brings home the first three consecutive games, complete with a break. The superiority is evident from the Majorcan, the Spaniard takes advantage of all the uncertainties of the opponent to snatch his serve again by taking the lead 5-1.

Djere tries to react with determination so much that he recovers one of the two disadvantaged breaks but fails to return definitively and yields the first set 6-3. From the start of the second set, the Serbian player is forced to cancel his opponent's break points, three only in the first game.

Nadal, as usual, continues to keep his opponent under pressure and breaks the balance in the third game with an excellent break (2-1). For the Spaniard it is child's play to keep the advantage until the tenth game when he is good at canceling the three chances of returning to a tie won by Djere, closing at 6-4.

The third set is literally without a story. The Serbian immediately loses his service with Nadal stretching up to 2-0. Djere keeps his serve in the third game but his match ends here. The Spanish champion wins four consecutive games and ends 6-1.

Rafael Nadal will push himself to the limit in order to win the Australian Open, according to Mats Wilander. The Spaniard got his campaign off to a winning start with victory over Laslo Djere today. And he’s now one step closer to beating Roger Federer’s Grand Slam record.

Wilander comments on Rafael Nadal

“His past injury issues ahead of the Australian Open could come from the fact he has to work on hard courts for a couple of months getting ready for Australia, that’s the first thing,” Mats Wilander said.

“We have seen Rafael Nadal during tournaments hitting ball after ball after ball and the other players don’t do that – he works really hard, even during majors. It could be a combination of hard courts and practising, needs more repetition and pushes himself hard.

This is Rafa Nadal, this is what he has done throughout his whole career and he is going to push himself to the limit”. Nadal admitted he was delighted with his performance after the match against Deere, saying: “It’s been a tough 15 days for me because I had some tough issues with the back so I needed to survive today.

“That’s what I did. I tried to be focused all the time, tried to get through. I wish him all the best for the season. For me personally, I’m happy to be through to the second round. I did a good job today. Straight sets, that’s what I needed.

I’m here to try my best as always. I can’t say much more. Let’s go day by day. Today I was able to find a way to be through. That’s given me a chance to have one more day tomorrow."