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Nadal's Coach Says Spaniard 'Still Hungry'

ATP news - Thu, 18/08/2016 - 6:31am

The day before his debut at the Western & Southern Open, Rafael Nadal practised on Court 15 surrounded by thousands of fans who wanted to see the Spaniard prepare to face Pablo Cuevas in Cincinnati.

After the practice session, Francisco Roig, one of Nadal’s coaches, spoke to ATPWorldTour.com. Roig assessed his pupil’s current form. The 30-year-old Nadal was forced to pull out of Roland Garros with a wrist injury.

“When he got injured, his form was good. He had improved a lot by winning Monte-Carlo and Barcelona. He was improving day-by-day," Roig said of Nadal, who also reached the semi-finals in Madrid and Rome.

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In Cincinnati, Nadal will try to regain his earlier momentum. He is scheduled to face Cuevas for the fourth time on Wednesday at the ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournament. Nadal leads their FedEx ATP Head2Head series 2-1 but lost their most recent contest on the clay in Rio de Janeiro in February.

“It has been two months off, with not much preparation time,” Roig said. “Now is time to go step-by-step... He has been great mentally and has been moving well."

Roig wants Nadal to leave Cincinnati with confidence for the remainder of the ATP World Tour season. The coach believes the 2013 Cincinnati champion can positively bounce back from his latest setback.

“He has been dealing with this for many, many years,” Roig said of Nadal's past injuries. “Hopefully he can keep playing at his best. Nadal is still hungry. If there is someone who knows how to come back after injuries, it’s him. There is no doubt about it."

'Monster' Neymar shines in Brazil rout to reach Rio final

ABC Sport - Thu, 18/08/2016 - 6:11am

Neymar scores twice, including the fastest goal in Olympics history, to help Brazil coast into the men's gold medal football match with a 6-0 thrashing of Honduras.