RAFAEL Nadal said he was going to spend time fishing and partying before setting his sights on the one Grand Slam title he has never won – the US Open.
The Spanish world number one said he was heading home to his Mediterranen island of Mallorca to have fun with his friends on the beach after winning his second Wimbledon title.
The 24-year-old claimed his eighth Grand Slam crown when he beat Tomas Berdych of the Czech Republic 6-3, 7-5, 6-4 on Sunday.
The French Open champion is also due to have treatment on his troublesome knees –– which prevented him from defending his 2008 Wimbledon trophy last year–– to get him in shape to fight the US hard-court season.
But for now, it’s party time for Nadal.
“We’re going to think about US Open in one month. Right now we just relax and enjoy for me this amazing season,” the left-hander said.
“It was very difficult for me to be back at my best. I did, so it is very important and emotional moment for me. I want to enjoy that.
“I keep working to try to be in the US Open, finally ready to try to win. But for sure the US Open is going to be one of my goals for the rest of my career.
“But right now I am going to enjoy the beach, fishing, golf, friends, party, and Mallorca.”
Nadal is dubbed the “King of Clay” thanks to his five French Open titles and near-invincibility on the slow surface. But having suffered only two defeats at Wimbledon since 2005 — and both of those in finals — it may not be long before he is considered tennis royalty on grass too.
“If you really want to play well in one surface and you are a good player, I think in the end you are going to find a way,” Nadal said.
“And for me, to play on grass always was my dream, and to play here for me was all my life, a big goal for me. I think I have a very good thing to play here on grass –– the movement. I move well on this court, and that’s very important part of the game.
“Sure, later my serve was always improving a little bit. It is important to play more aggressive than on the rest of the surfaces.
“The main thing is to really want to improve on every surface. On grass it is the main thing.”
Nadal reckons his success is down to sheer belief, relentless hard work and constant efforts to improve his game.
And the Wimbledon champion reckons keeping it up will drive him towards bettering his two US Open semi-final appearances.
“I wake up every morning with the illusion to practice and to improve, with the illusion to play well another time,” the Spaniard said.
“The last seven months or six months of the 2009 season I wasn’t ready to play at this level. I was ready to fight, but not to play like I am doing now.
“The positive thing in that seven months is I didn’t lose in the first or second rounds. I wasn’t ready to win, but I was there all the time ––semi-finals, quarter-finals, one time one final in Shanghai.
“So without playing well, I didn’t have bad results. That’s very important for the confidence. — Sport24