• Lendl also awaits Nadal's return to tennis

    11/18/12 6:09 AM | Johan Lindahl
    Lendl also awaits Nadal's return to tennis One-time Czech Ivan Lendl, now the coach of Andy Murray, returned to his former country for the weekend Davis Cup tie with Spain in Prague and admitted he's anticipating the pending tennis return of Rafael Nadal.

    The Spaniard is currently recovering from knee injuries which have kept him off court for five months and counting.

    Lendl, now an American in Florida, said that while Nadal is sorely missed by the current Spanish Davis Cup team contesting the weekend final with the Czechs, the possible presence of Nadal on the team might have well been counter-productive for the visitors.

    "I think you have to look at what Rafael Nadal you would have," said the 52-year-old during a media conference of members of the 1980 Czechoslovakia Davis Cup winning squad comprising himself, Pavel Slozil, Jan Kodes and Tomas Smid.

    "If you have the Rafael Nadal who played all year and was healthy all year, it's obviously much better player than Rafael Nadal who would be coming back as the first match after six months off. That would be very, very difficult, even for a player like Rafa," said Lendl, always a master of logic and understatement.

    "I hope he can come back at full strength," Lendl said of Nadal, who is due to begin training in Mallorca after last playing in a Wimbledon second-round loss to Czech Lukas Rosol on June 28.

    "I'm looking forward to him coming back. He is a great champion and a very nice person. I always enjoy seeing him and I hope he's well and coming back soon."

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Like Lendl, every sane tennis lover knows what Rafa gives to tennis.

#Rafa Kool-Aid drinker and die-heard armada bandwagon driver.

nadline , 11/18/12 9:14 AM

I can just see chr18 reading Lendl's comments and turning away in disgust..........

Honestly, I am looking forward to to the Oz Open just to see the attention Rafa will get from fans and the media alike.........I hope Benito has lined up extra security for Rafa.

Lucky tournament organizers..............


rafaisthebest , 11/18/12 9:27 AM

Looks like he's eagerly waiting to see Andy's game against Rafa.

abhirf , 11/18/12 9:54 AM

All the coaches will be watching anxiously............................

ed251137 , 11/18/12 11:34 AM

I can just see chr18 reading Lendl's comments and turning away in disgust..........

And logging on immediately to take its usual jibe in true Fed-like form!

jean , 11/18/12 1:19 PM

Nah Jean. Too busy working on his next doctorate - The Psychology of Trolling.

ed251137 , 11/18/12 1:42 PM

Or watching the Ferru/Berdy match waiting/hoping for Ferru to "choke"............

rafaisthebest , 11/18/12 1:57 PM

Or both.

jean , 11/18/12 2:13 PM

chr18 believes his own distorted views


chlorostoma , 11/18/12 3:13 PM

What I mean is that 25% of the time chr18 writes some more or less normal stuff.

The rest of the time, on other tennis topics, he writes with hate or envy or provocation or compensation and in each of those posts he writes stuff that just is pretty sadly far from reality. But apparently he still believes in those views that come from a sad place. I guess that's what happens when you write from a place where such needs take you.

chlorostoma , 11/18/12 4:10 PM

Not 25%, more like 10%.

The rest of the time his Masters degree in English literature gives him the opportunity to indulge his flair for creative writing.

ed251137 , 11/18/12 4:24 PM

Whether he knows it or not, he trolls for the attention like he is getting on this thread. Like all trolls by definition.


Conspirator , 11/18/12 4:59 PM

Lendl isn't a Czech anymore?

#OneTimeCzech ??????????????????????

RickyDimon , 11/19/12 6:27 AM

In 1992, Lendl became a U.S. citizen.

Nativenewyorker , 11/19/12 8:15 AM

Lendl is not the only one awaiting Rafa's return to tennis. There'll be a fanfare when Rafa makes his first appearance and I can't wait nor can the tennis world.

#Rafa Kool-Aid drinker and die-heard armada bandwagon driver.

nadline , 11/19/12 10:42 AM

NNY: Even though Lendl has taken up US citizenship he still retains citizenship of his home country. Therefore it is inaccurate to describe him as a former Czech unless he applied to be a Naturalized US citizen in which case he would have had to renounce his Czech citizenship. I dont believe this is the case.


ed251137 , 11/19/12 12:27 PM

yeah, that makes no sense....

RickyDimon , 11/19/12 4:19 PM

Why does what I say make no sense?

ed251137 , 11/19/12 11:23 PM

As far as I know there are only two types of citizenship. You are born a us citizen or you get naturalized. USA permits dual citizenship but if the other country does not, you have to renounce the other or forego becoming a US citizen. Czech Rep probably does not permit dual citizenship.

holdserve , 11/20/12 2:43 AM

I got my info from the ATP website. However, I did not say that Lendl wasn't a Czech citizen anymore. I only said when he became a U.S. citizen. I could go back and try to get more info, but all I remember is that he stopped playing Davis Cup for Czech Rep in 1985.

Holdserve may be correct about Czech Rep not permitting dual citizenship, but I am not certain.

Nativenewyorker , 11/20/12 8:59 AM

Not that it really matters whether he has dual nationality or not but Deuce could ask Andy the question - he would know :-)

Even if he did renounce his Czech citizenship he was warmly received when he was in Prague last weekend.

ed251137 , 11/20/12 11:32 AM

Rafa has started on court!!!!

#Rafa Kool-Aid drinker and die-heard armada bandwagon driver.
#The tennis world is waiting

nadline , 11/20/12 1:38 PM

I'm so excited, I left out the word 'practicing'.

#Rafa Kool-Aid drinker and die-heard armada bandwagon driver.

nadline , 11/20/12 1:41 PM

Rafa Nadal: "I don't set a date for a comeback. The date at the moment is the day by day practice. I'm pleased to resume even though things are improving gradually. Now it's a matter of caution and patience."

#Rafa Kool-Aid drinker and die-heard armada bandwagon driver.

nadline , 11/20/12 1:58 PM

He is careful to avoid making any committment - which is a good thing because he is not putting himself under pressure to be ready by a certain date.

Does anyone else have the same feeling as I do - the return to competition might be further away than was first thought?

'I don't set a date'.........'day by day'..........' improving gradually'............
'caution and patience'...............


ed251137 , 11/20/12 7:11 PM

^^^are you @Ricky in disguise? All these doubts about Rafa's intended return............suspicious.

Rafa will be in Oz.............

rafaisthebest , 11/20/12 7:52 PM

Rafa being out all summer was a blessing in a disguise for Murray. We've seen his emergence finally, and it was all thanks to Rafa's absence.

My guess is that Toni has probably been keeping a good eye on the developments of this past summer and that it does not bode well for Rafa. He has a tall task ahead of him when he returns... Next year will be so exciting.

aegis , 11/20/12 8:39 PM

RITB: Everyone keeps jumping up and down with excitement each time there is a progress bulletin and second guessing non-committal statements.
I am naturally suspicious - I spent too long working in the media to be anything else.

I dont find the thought of next year exciting...........yet. Far from it, I know I will be sick with nervous tension every time he plays until I see him bite on a trophy once again.

ed251137 , 11/20/12 10:47 PM

@ed251137, 11/20/12 10:47 PM
You don't need to read the space between the words. Rafa said himself he's still recovering (not recovered).

Here are some more quotes from his interviews.
"I think I am feeling better, the knee is improving the right way and I am happy to be on court another time after a few months outside," Nadal told reporters.
"I am just enjoying the feeling to be playing tennis another time and, well, it will be another period of my recovery," he added.
"I start very slow and I go day by day. I will work hard in my comeback and hopefully the knee will be ready soon. "
"Always you have to be careful. A few months outside of competition the body has to re-adapt everything on court and all the muscles need to start very slow."
"Every day is better otherwise I wouldn't be on the court."
"The images say the evolution has been favourable and that is reason for satisfaction after many months of working and waiting."
"It is now another phase where I'm starting little by little and going day by day with patience to find the right moment when all is well and my body will be ready to compete and when my knee is ready."

I'm cautionally optimistic.

Augustina08 , 11/21/12 12:11 AM

I don't believe there is anything hidden between the lines, I think he is taking his return gradually because of the tear he had in his stomach muscle when he came back straight into a M1000 without much preparation.

The media hangs on his every word so he is doing his best not to allow them to run with the slightest hint that he is fully recovered. Full recovery also means match fitness so he has to slowly train his muscles back into playing tennis and Rafa is never rushed, he takes his time. In 4 weeks time, I think he'll be back in the groove.

I'm already in Dubai, so I hope I will see him in AD after Christmas.

#Rafa Kool-Aid drinker and die-heard armada bandwagon driver.

nadline , 11/21/12 5:19 AM

aegis , 11/20/12 8:39 PM

Why the preoccupation with Toni's thoughts, deeds, attitude to money etc, etc? Don't try to project YOUR thoughts on Toni, you are the one who is thinking, no HOPING, that last summer's developments do not bode well for Rafa. Just say it, no need to pretend it's Toni's thoughts!

Rafa relishes competition. His 11 Slams were won in arguably the best era in men's tennis. He knows how to beat the best. I expect him to continue with this tradition next year.............

rafaisthebest , 11/21/12 6:02 AM

Nadline: Dont take any notice of me. We all handle stress differently, no?

I've never been one to sing 'always look on the bright side'.

I lean towards pessimism as protection against disappointment. That way it comes as a lovely surprise when things work out for the better.

ed251137 , 11/21/12 6:44 AM

ed: your Xmas present- an Eeyore coffee mug is on it's seriously have seen one :)
It's the years and years of waiting for Andy to win a slam wots done it.

deuce , 11/21/12 6:51 AM

rafaisthebest, 11/21/12 6:02 AM,

Thank you for saying this! I feel exactly the same way! It's really annoying when someone presumes to speak for Uncle Toni, especially when it is meant to diminish or demean Rafa's comeback. At least have the common decency to speak your own mind and not try to hide behind Uncle Toni!

Now, as for the great news that Rafa is back practicing again - YAY!!! We all know that Rafa has to take it slow after being off for months. He would remember how he tore his stomach muscle because he had little preparation for the 2009 USO. The muscles have to become stronger and that takes some time.

I am please that Rafa hasn't allowed himself to be boxed in to anything at the moment. He needs to focus on the day to day practice and getting the feel of playing tennis again.

Although I am over the moon to hear that Rafa is finally practicing, I am kind of like ed in being a pessimist myself. I will be a nervous wreck the first time I see Rafa in actual competition.

At least Rafa is on his way back! Something to celebrate!

Nativenewyorker , 11/21/12 7:29 AM

Eyeore. Mmmmm. Next moniker coming up..................

ed251137 , 11/21/12 3:53 PM

Lendl, heavily disguised as a cameraman, spotted filming Rafa's practice session...........;-)

ed251137 , 11/24/12 8:33 AM

Current ATP-rankings

1. Djokovic 12 500 pts
2. Murray 8 750 pts
3. Federer 8 670 pts
4. Ferrer 6 970 pts
5. Nadal 6 385 pts

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