Davydenko: "Rafael Nadal? It was like playing against anybody"



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Davydenko: "Rafael Nadal? It was like playing against anybody"

He is not one who loves the spotlight very much especially when it comes to interviews. Former tennis player Nikolay Davydenko has been one of the best tennis players of the last decades even though he has never managed to triumph in a slam by reaching the semifinals four times (two at Roland Garros and two at the US Open).

He explained: "I stopped watching tennis for a while, but then I started commenting on Eurosport the matches of Russian Grand Slam tennis players and now I feel closer to this sport. Technically I don't think tennis has progressed much, I don't think the young players of this era are better than those of my era.

This surprises me. Physically they are better, serve better and hit harder, but Nadal and Djokovic are still in control of this power, they are the ones who keep winning Grand Slams and beating people ten years younger, which is incredible.

I don't see NextGen playing extraordinary tennis. For me playing against Rafael Nadal was like playing against any other opponent. I've beaten him in all our matches on hard and he beat me on clay, that's why he keeps winning the Roland Garros.

There are many matches that I remember fondly, including the final in Miami, of course. I also remember beating him in the Shanghai final and beating Djokovic in the semifinals. Beating Federer in the semi-finals of the ATP Finals was also incredible.

I'm the kind of person who remembers these games a lot, and I don't forget the one against Coria in the fourth round of the Roland Garros."

Davydenko explains why he managed to win against Nadal

He is one of the very few players to have a positive score against Rafael Nadal: "My game went well with Rafa's on the hard courts, so I didn't have many problems with him.

On the other hand, I would never have been able to beat James Blake in those conditions, he was hitting very hard and closing the points in a few strokes. Against the clay court specialists, Spaniards and Argentines, they were the easiest matches for me on hard court, because they play long points with a lot of spin.

It was more difficult against the Americans, who hit hard and flat, they wanted short points. Federer was my most difficult opponent, his forehand was extremely fast and his serve was very precise, I couldn't control him.

" The career Russian tennis player boasts 21 ATP titles won including the 2009 finals and the three 1000s in Paris Bercy 2006, Miami Open 2008 and Shanghai Masters 2009. The latter two against the Majorcan.