“I wasn’t in the right mood and he didn’t miss a shot” Matteo Berrettini ‘PROUD’ of his performance despite losing to Rafael Nadal in the semis

Matteo Berrettini looks back at his defeat to Rafael Nadal in the semi-finals of the 2022 Australian Open that denies Matteo his second major final.

Rafael Nadal and Matteo Berrettini
Rafael Nadal and Matteo Berrettini

Matteo Berrettini was denied entry into his first-ever Australian Open finals by a vintage Rafael Nadal performance in their semi-final clash at the 2022 Australian Open. Nadal won the match 6-3, 6-2, 3-6, 6-3 in 2 hours and 55 minutes to reach his 6th Australian Open finals and his 29th career Grand Slam finals.

Berrettini was not looking good in the first two sets and that showed in the flawless manner in which Nadal raced to take a 2-0 set lead going into the third. Matteo clawed his way back into the game in the 3rd set with some unreal shots and breaking Nadal at an important point, it was not enough as Nadal wrapped up the match in the 4th set.

“The first two sets weren’t what I expected, what I wanted from myself. I was, I wouldn’t say flat, but I wasn’t in the right mood, in the right mental mindset and for so many reasons. Today he was just way better than me. But like I said, it was a good run. I have a lot of things that I can improve and a lot of things that I did well. I’m proud of what I have done.

“It was the first time I played with the roof closed. I needed some time to adapt to the playing conditions. Compared to the New York match I entered the field with a different awareness. I think my level is rising from tournament to tournament, these matches make me understand that I still have to improve but at the same time they are a clear sign that I am improving,” said Berrettini during his press conference.

Matteo Berrettini heaps praise on Rafael Nadal

Rafael Nadal and Matteo Berrettini
Rafael Nadal and Matteo Berrettini

Returning to Grand Slam action for the first time since his semi-final defeat at the 2021 French Open. Given his foot injury that had kept him out for nearly 6 months and had put doubt whether he will play again, it was a sensational win for Nadal who has now 500 hardcourts wins under his belt.

“I was not at his level of mental intensity. Today I struggled to enter the match but I do not remember his free mistake at the beginning of the match. I cannot say that I am unhappy. This is a cursed sport. You must always try to ask yourself more otherwise these games are not won. Just look at what Rafa is doing.

“The reaction I had after the first 2 sets confirms it. These matches make me understand that I am working well.  At the beginning I was a bit out of phase. It is not every day to play with Rafa in a Grand Slam. He does not have a wrong decision. I feel I can do more. It doesn’t mean I would have won. Next time, I hope, I can do better. It is not fair to Rafa to say that I gave him 2 sets. 

“I missed 2 straight on the two 15-30 of the 4th set, which, if you want to win with Nadal, you cannot fail to grasp. Nadal didn’t miss a shot, he kept changing directions. But I ask myself more and more and I feel that I can do better in the future. It makes me feel like it’s time to beat them,” said Berrettini with his last statement towards Nadal and Novak Djokovic, the only players to defeat him in Slam matches since 2021.

Also Read: WATCH: Rafael Nadal has an EMOTIONAL BREAKDOWN after reaching the finals of the 2022 Australian Open