Dimitrov's confession: "Difficult for a one-handed backhand to face Nadal on clay"

The Bulgarian spoke at the press conference after the victory against Yoshihito Nishioka in Rome

by Lorenzo Ciotti
Dimitrov's confession: "Difficult for a one-handed backhand to face Nadal on clay"
© Mike Hewitt / Staff Getty Images Sport

"It was a difficult match, I could have done better. But it's the first time I've played on this court and in these conditions. I'm happy to have finished in two sets, but I can do better from a game point of view. Now I have a free day to try some things in training. I love the Internazionali BNL d'Italia crowd, I can feel their energy, it's like being at home, even today they supported me. I love playing here even if I didn't have my best results. I know that if I do things right, I can have my opportunities."

Grigor Dimitrov expressed these words at the press conference after winning the match against Yoshihito Nishioka with a score of 7-5, 6-4 in one hour and 37 minutes of play, in Rome. The Bulgarian champion then described the sensations that a tennis player tries when he finds Rafael Nadal on the other side of the net on clay-courts.

"It's not fun. How can I explain it, you don't feel comfortable when you face him on clay. It's difficult in general for a one-handed backhand player to play against him on clay. The direction of the ball is different, you have to move more," he explained.

Rafael Nadal
Rafael Nadal© Mike Hewitt / Staff Getty Images Sport

The Rome crowd supported Dimitrov from the first exchange to the last. The Bulgarian greatly appreciated the affection of the numerous spectators present at the Foro Italico on Court 12 and beat Nishioka. In the third round of the Internazionali BNL d'Italia there will be no one-handed backhand battle with Lorenzo Musetti, because the Italian retired at the beginning of the second set with Terence Atmane due to an intestinal virus.

Grigor Dimitrov
Grigor Dimitrov© Julian Finney / Staff Getty Images Sport

Continuing his press conference, Dimitrov also focused on the injuries suffered by Jannik Sinner and Carlos Alcaraz.

"We have to win to play many matches. I think that extending some tournaments is not the easiest thing for our body to sustain. Even if we have a day off, we still need to use it to train and prepare. It doesn't matter how strong you are mentally or physically. There are many factors I could talk about, it's difficult. We've had a lot of retirements in the last few tournaments. Tennis is tough and is becoming more and more challenging," he explained.

Yoshihito Nishioka