In the wake of his arrival on Argentinian soil, Rafael Nadal met with the media in a press conference held at the Marriott Hotel of Florida St., in Buenos Aires, where he talked at great length about his dream season, his goals, Davis Cup and, of course, David Nalbandian, with whom he will play two exhibition matches this week.
At the start of the 20-minute press conference, the best player in the world was named guest of honour of the City of Buenos Aires, a place where he “has many friends” and which he hasn’t visited since early 2005. Regarding the changes what occurred in those nearly nine years, Nadal joked, “Between 2005 and now, what changed is the amount of hair I have left.” In a more serious tone, he added: “The Argentinian crowd is without a doubt one of the most special in the world.“
Praising a great player
When came the time to talk about the man whose retirement he is there to celebrate, Rafa could not pay him a better tribute.
“David Nalbandian is one of the best players in Argentinian history“, said the Spaniard. “Having the chance to share the court with such an icon of Argentinian sport is a privileged moment. I hope that he will receive the farewell that he deserves. He is a player who devoted himself a lot for his country.“
A year beyond his dreams
Asked to come back on his amazing season, Nadal admitted that “a year ago, I could not imagine reaching the final of the year-end championship and to finish the year number one. I achieved much more than I could dream of. I value each day, each win, much more than I did in 2005, 06 or 07.“
What are his goals for next season? “My goal is to get to Australia in good shape“, said Rafa. “My goals are in the short-term. I can’t set myself long-term goals.“
Words of wisdom
Rafael Nadal also added a few words of wisdom for Argentina, who is right now in the middle of an internal Davis Cup hurricane, once more.
Knowing what it takes to win this trophy, he said, “Argentina will win the Davis Cup if they succeed in having all the best playing together. If the best players don’t want to play it, there is need to think about what’s being done wrong.“
Today is David Nalbandian’s turn to meet the press, at 12:00 local time, at the Usina del Arte (La Boca, Buenos Aires). The BATennis team will. of course, be present to provide you with all the information.