Nadal takes hope from China Open run despite Djokovic defeat

Talek Harris 05:31 12/10/2015
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On the comeback trail: Nadal.

Rafael Nadal said he will have to wait and see if he can play next week’s Shanghai Masters after injuring his foot during defeat in the China Open final on Sunday.

– Japan Open: Wawrinka clinches title after easy win
– Beijing: Muguruza beats Bacsinszky in final
– Beijing: Djokovic dispatches Nadal to win China Open

Nadal was moving gingerly after his loss to Novak Djokovic and he will monitor the right foot problem when he flies from Beijing to Shanghai on Monday.

“I have to wait until tomorrow. I felt something, but hopefully it’s fine. I don’t know,” Nadal said. “My schedule is go to Shanghai and practice tomorrow afternoon. For the moment, still the same.” 

Despite the injury, eighth-ranked Nadal was pleased to have played his first hardcourt final this year, after a season when he has dropped well off the pace set by Djokovic.

The 29-year-old said he had growing belief that he could pull off yet another comeback and return to the stage where he can mount a realistic challenge to the imperious Serb.

“I’m going to fight. I’m going to do it my way,” he said. “When I was number two and Roger was number one, it was not my obsession to catch Roger. My obsession was to improve my game and do my way.

“For me is the same thing today,” he said. “My motivation is to keep going, do it my way, and I have been that way already. I know if I am playing well again, then I can fight.

“If I can fight, I can compete well (a number of ) times in a row against the best players, then normally I was a good competitor. So I think I going to be good competitor again if I recover my level.”

Nadal has been written off before in his career and has managed to recover, notably in 2013 when he returned from a serious knee injury and climbed back to world No. 1.

He had previously demonstrated his grit and determination when he doggedly tracked down and overtook Federer, the long-time world number one, in 2008.

“Obviously today (Djokovic) is better than me, and that’s it. I hope to fight again with the top players because I have motivation to do it and I am working very hard and well,” Nadal said.

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