1/30/13 2:31 PM | Johan Lindahl
Rafael Nadal flies to Chile to begin his comeback to tennis after more than seven months out with a knee injury, ready to use a new racquet which he was at first loath to try.
The former world No. 1, his ranking now down to fifth after his inactivity, will be playing in his Latin clay-court comeback with a Babolat's Aeropro Drive racket, according to dpa. While Nadal was chilly towards the major change of sticks, he apparently bowed to the wishes of his coach and uncle Toni.
"Uncle Toni put pressure on Rafa to change. If you want to be better, you have to take risks," Eric Babolat, the owner French firm, told dpa. "I don't agree with what you're saying, but I'll give it a try," Babolat said Nadal usually tells his uncle-coach.
Babolat said the new weapon will give Nadal's shots even more of the lethal spin which plays havoc with opponents. "He already has a lot of topspin, but he wants more," said Babolat.
And there are even more plans in the works: It's possible that by the end of the season, the racquet model could be equipped with a chip which records the date on every shot it strikes, potentially a devastating statistical took for Team Nadal.
"It could become a habit, something usual after sport: sitting with your friends to compare each one's technical data," said Babolat, who is also hoping it can catch on in the consumer market.
Find the latest tennis odds at Unibet.com
|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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