‘Nothing lasts forever’ Rafael Nadal had to taste defeat at Roland Garros only for the third time at French Open 2021. He clearly didn’t play his best tennis on the beloved Court Philippe Chatrier. He lost to the current World No.1 and arch nemesis Novak Djokovic in 4 sets 3-6,6-3,7-6(4),6-2 under lights.
It was the first time Nadal lost a match at Roland Garros after winning the first set and the first time he lost in a semifinal/final at Roland Garros. There is no doubt that this loss would hurt him a lot and he expressed that in the press conference too.
Nadal said at the post-match press conference, “That’s sport. Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose. I tried to give my best, it was probably not my best day out there. Credit to him. What can I add ? I won a lot here but I couldn’t today, that’s reality.”
Nadal doubtful for the grass season
The calendar will now move to the Grass season and players will be gearing for Wimbledon. Nadal particularly doesn’t have a great record on Grass for the last decade. And it looks likely that he will take a break and skip the Grass season to prepare himself for the tour ahead.
He said, “I have been through two intense months and I do not feel able to say if I will be able to play or not in two weeks because I am no longer 25, 26 or 27 years old. Now I want to rest and we will see.”
Due to the postpone of the French Open for a week, the gap between the two grand slams is just 2 weeks, which gives players very little time to recover and train on Grass. So it is highly likely that Nadal will not step on Grass this season. However, his comptriots Djokovic and Federer will play at Wimbledon and will be hot favorites for the title. Federer will also play at Halle next week.