Rafael Nadal shows weakness post-game
Following an impressive victory over David Nalbandian at the U.S. Open, Rafael Nadal shows tremendous weakness at the post-game news conference.
While answering interview questions in Spanish postmatch, Nadal’s face suddenly contorted in pain. The audience watched as his head tilted back and he put his arm over his face, then slid down under the table in obvious agony.
The trainers crowded around the table, but after a few moments, Nadal came back up, brushing it off as a simple leg cramp.
Nadal said nonchalantly that it was just bad luck that the cramp happened during the interview and not in the locker room.
Immediately, videos of the horrifying episode have splashed across the web, far overshadowing his straight-set win 2 hours prior to the cramping incident.
Nadal had won over Nalbandian 7-6 (7-5), 6-1, 7-5, and it was considered almost a routine.
When asked about his feelings about the game, Nadal expressed that he was happy about just about everything. He felt that his movements were very well, including his backhand.
It was shortly after this description that the cramps came in his right hamstring and quadriceps. The few dozen reporters had their cameras rolling, not knowing what to do as Nadal doubled up in pain.
He apparently pleaded, in Spanish, for a trainer to be called into the room. The trainer wound up stretching his legs and easing the pain.
Later on, Nadal would have a good laugh about the incident with his manager. Thankfully it was nothing serious from a medical perspective, although it certainly gave his fans something more memorable than his victory on court.
Andy Roddick explained to reporters that tennis players regularly dealt with cramps, and it was triggered even more so from the temperature. For example, Nadal’s game against the 2002 Wimbledon runner-up had been played on an afternoon that was muggy and had the temperature in the 80s.
Roddick shared that every single player has had a similar struggle, as they run miles around the court in nasty weather, which results in nerves being thrown off course.
Roddick is among the four American men reaching the fourth round in the U.S. Open since 2003, along with John Isner, at No. 28, and Donald Young, who was unseeded, who also won on Sunday. Mardy Fish, at No. 8, also won on Saturday.
In fact, Nadal was not the only player who struggled with the heat and humidity on Sunday. Italy’s Flavia Pennetta, at No. 26, admitted that she felt like vomiting on the court during her match, winning 6-4, 7-6 (6) over China’s Peng Shuai, at No. 13.