2/9/13 2:53 PM | Johan Lindahl
Rafael Nadal can't hide his contentment at a comeback to tennis on clay in Chile which took him into the business end of the Vina del Mar ATP event in both singles and doubles.
Nadal told France's LÉquipe that his enthusiasm for his sport is undiminished after his seven-months-plus knee injury absence. "I’m still the same. I still feel passionate about the game. I still have the same demands with every shot I hit.
"I’m still as motivated as before to train. If my knee allows me to train for longer than three hours per day at full tilt and if I can run without thinking about my knee or the pain, why wouldn’t I be able to do what I did before?
"The fact that I was playing excellently when I was forced to stop, is helping me right now. The memory (of those good sensations) is really fresh."
The former No. 1, who now finds himself on fifth in the world and likely to find upward progress difficult, said that everything from now on depends on the state of his knees. But he said that he is eager to get back onto hardcourt as well, a chance which will come in less than a month at the two Masters 1000 events in the US.
And he put one rumour to apparent rest: "I don’t have the intention of changing my schedule by playing more on clay than before. If you want to become the first, second or third in the world ranking, you have to play and win on hardcourts. Honestly, I think it’s possible."
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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