World No. 3 Rafael Nadal suffered a surprise defeat at the Citi Open in Washington but he was happy that his troublesome foot felt better than in his opening match at the tournament. On Thursday, Nadal exited the Washington event following a 6-4 1-6 6-4 loss to world No.
50 Lloyd Harris. “The most positive thing is my foot was better today than yesterday, so that's the best news possible,” Nadal said, per the ATP website. “I played against a player that played well. For the moment, I think I played better than yesterday, but in the third when I had opportunities, the truth is his serve was huge and I played this last game really badly”.
Nadal got broken in the 10th game of the third set while serving to stay in the match. “You can't have mistakes in the key moments, and in the key moments I think in the last game, I was a little bit more nervous.
My serve was not working the proper way,” Nadal said. “That's it. Yes, well done for him. It’s a great victory for him. I wish him all the very best”.
Nadal keen to get some work done on the practice court
“I was able to move a bit better, so that is very important, especially for me personally, to keep enjoying the sport and keep having energy, believing that important things are possible,” Nadal said.
“And then I need to keep improving. It’s true. I honestly didn't have two easy months. I had a lot of problems with my foot. I was not able to practise all the days that I really wanted, but I did as much as I could and I tried hard here”.
Nadal was playing in Washington for the first time in his career. “The most painful thing is [to] not be able to be on court again tomorrow in front of this amazing crowd,” Nadal said. “But I take a great experience [with] me.
I was able to know a new city, for me a very important one. I enjoyed [it], and the support and the love of the people will stay [with] me”. Nadal is set to play at next week's Toronto Masters. “I tried very hard, as everybody knows.
But [it] was not enough. [The] only thing I can do is congratulate my opponent and just keep going,” Nadal said. “I’m going to keep trying to practise the proper way and to give myself a chance to be better soon”.