This content was published 9 years ago. It may refer to a past edition of the Internazionali BNL d’Italia.
Some players use events such as Internazionali BNL d’Italia as a warm-up event. Coming just a week before the start of the season’s second Grand Slam in Paris, it is easy for it to be treated as a curtain raiser. But Rafael Nadal is not any player. An impressive display to beat Tomas Berdych ensured Nadal won 6-2, 6-4 to set up a meeting with great rival Roger Federer and make it eight finals out of eight since his comeback from injury. “I am not this guy,” said Nadal when put to him that it was a great time for him to reach his peak. “I try the best every day and don’t talk about Roland Garros before the Roland Garros and love every tournament in the clay court season in Europe. “Every tournament has a big history and is important and so my feeling is that Rome, Madrid, Barcelona and Monte Carlo don’t deserve to be the preparation for Roland Garros. I don’t feel these tournaments this way and I try and do my best and the Roland Garros is important but it is not the only tournament in the world. To win any of these is very important. “The first set was fantastic. I played a high level and everything well and no mistakes and changing direction and playing inside the court and good percentage on the times and dominating the point and following to the net. I think I played one of the best matches since I am back.” So is Nadal playing the best tennis of his life on clay? “Today I played great and I don’t know where is my best level but it is difficult to say 100% or 90%,” he said. “But I cannot say I am now happy and I said last week I was playing much better in Madrid than Monte Carlo and Barcelona and against Gulbis I don’t think I played well but yesterday I played well and I had a fantastic match.”