TENNISWORLDUSA EXCLUSIVE - Marc Lopez: 'Friendship with Rafael Nadal and Feliciano Lopez is the key of our success'

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TENNISWORLDUSA EXCLUSIVE - Marc Lopez: 'Friendship with Rafael Nadal and Feliciano Lopez is the key of our success'

As permutations were being discussed around regarding Spain’s team for the doubles tie against India, in the Davis Cup World Group play-off last weekend, one name remained a constant. That of Marc Lopez, who this year has enjoyed equal success teaming up with Rafael Nadal and Feliciano Lopez, with whom he shares his last name.

While success in itself cannot be compared, the 34-year-old Catalan’s achievements this year – equally significant with both his partners – do raise the point of how he adapts his game to be in tandem with the diverse playing styles of both his partners.

“Feli (Lopez) has got a great serve and Rafael (Nadal) has got a great game. But the key of our success is our friendship. Trust between the teams is the key of our success of playing together,” said Marc, who had had a successful partnership previously with another compatriot, Marcel Granollers, in the post-match press conference.

Shortly thereafter, when TennisWorld USA caught up with him for an exclusive, he elaborated on his two biggest wins this season – the men’s doubles gold medal that he won at the Rio Games, with Nadal; and his maiden doubles Major at the French Open, with Lopez.

“It has been an unforgettable experience. It was my goal to win a Grand Slam and I have achieved that. It was my first year of playing with Feliciano, which was great for him as well,” he explained, referring that it was Feliciano’s first Grand Slam win as well, before mentioning his Olympic success.

“Even qualifying for Rio, I feel, was an honour and it was much better to win a gold medal with my best friend Rafael Nadal.” The wins the Lopez duo has accumulated this year has also seen them qualify for the World Tour Finals.

However, while one Lopez – read Feliciano – will be making his debut in the tournament, Marc however has been there three times previously and has even won it once, the first time that he qualified for it, in 2012 with Granollers.

“It was an incredible experience,” opened up Marc, “(It was) very great to have played there three years, in 2012, 2013 and 2014 with Marcel Granollers and to have won it in 2012 specifically. It is one of the best organised tournaments and I love it for what it represents as well.

And I’m happy to be going back for it this year as well with Feli and intend to prepare well for it.” As regards the remainder of the season is concerned, before the London finals, Marc Lopez mentioned that his itinerary – partnering Feliciano Lopez – included three tournaments, starting with the Rakuten Open in Tokyo that will be played from 3rd to 9th October, and the Shanghai and Paris Masters thereafter.

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