Saturday, September 22, 2018
Close  
  • share this

France Davis Cup skipper says Nadal’s absence ‘changes everything’

/ 09:51 PM September 11, 2018

France’s Lucas Pouille (R) celebrates with teammates Jeremy Chardy (C), Adrian Mannarino (2ndL) and Pierre-Hugues Herbert (L) after winning the Davis Cup quarter final Italy vs France against Italy’s Fabio Fognini on April 8, 2018 at the ‘Valletta Cambiaso’ in Genova. / AFP PHOTO / Vincenzo PINTO

France Davis Cup captain Yannick Noah says world number one Rafael Nadal’s absence from Spain’s team in this weekend’s semi-final “changes everything”.

The 17-time Grand Slam champion has helped Spain capture the annual trophy four times, in 2004, 2008, 2009 and 2011, but was ruled out of facing Noah’s titleholders in Lille with a knee injury.

ADVERTISEMENT

The long-standing problem flared up again at the US Open when Nadal had to retire trailing two sets to love in his semi-final against Juan Del Potro last week.

“As a tennis fan I’m disappointed that he won’t be there,” Noah told a press conference at Lille’s Stade Pierre-Mauroy on Tuesday.

“As a captain, it changes everything for the match. The set-up is totally different, especially in terms of preparation.

“When Nadal plays, it’s almost (a certain) two points for Spain.

“Now, that changes and we have to adapt to it.”

With world number 55 Albert Ramos-Vinolas stepping in to replace the Spanish star Noah accepts that “of course we’ve got more chance”.

But he cautioned: “On paper the Spanish team are still better than ours.”

Joining Ramos for Spain are Pablo Carreno Busta (21st in the world), Roberto Bautista Agut (26), Feliciano Lopez (74) and Marcel Granollers (101).

Representing France are Lucas Pouille (19), Richard Gasquet (24), Benoit Paire (54), Nicolas Mahut (150) and Julien Benneteau (57).

ADVERTISEMENT

Spain skipper Sergi Bruguera agree with Noah that Nadal’s absence has a massive bearing on the complexion of the Lille semi-final.

“It changes a lot, it changes everything, but it is like it is, and we have a very good team all the same.

“We’ll fight and see what happens,” Bruguera said.

Read Next
Don't miss out on the latest news and information.
View comments

Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.

TAGS: Davis Cup, France, Rafael Nadal, Spain, Tennis
For feedback, complaints, or inquiries, contact us.


© Copyright 1997-2018 INQUIRER.net | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.