In a recent interview, local boy Adil Kalyanpur spoke about his time at the Rafa Nadal Academy and his experiences there. First speaking about playing the Bengaluru Challenger, he said, “I’m very excited to play in front of the home crowd, family & friends.
I’m not putting any pressure on myself. I’m just going to go out there & give it my best shot. I feel really confident after the pre-season, working with Milos and others”. The transition from juniors to seniors is a very tricky one and Kalyanpur shed some light on that as well.
“I think it’s pretty tough. It takes 2-3 years at least to establish yourself in the pros. The players are stronger, fitter and hit much bigger. There are a lot of mental games involved as well. So it’s quite tough,” he said.
During his time at the Academy, he got the chance to hit with Rafael Nadal and also spend some time with Toni Nadal as well. “He hits hard, deep, with a lot of spin. The second you lose a little bit of focus, you end up hitting the ball to the fence or out of the stadium.
You feel a lot of fatigue while hitting with him, but the adrenaline kind of keeps you going. It’s a lot of fun. And he was not going easy at all. It was no mercy from his side,” he said of hitting with Nadal. He also praised Toni, speaking about his coaching methods.
“Toni Nadal is a very nice guy. He’s very genuine, humble. He is a man of a lot of values and principles. And he brings a lot of intensity on the court. He follows the “Nadal Mentality”. There is a lot of reputations involved, and he’s very optimistic.
He kept telling me that I could turn my weaknesses into strengths. So that was nice. It’s good to have positivity around you”.