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2005 Jun 06 - Nadal on his Wimbledon chances

Rafael Nadal - winner of Roland Garros and current World No.3 - has written off his chances of winning Wimbledon this year.

He is currently preparing for Wimbledon on the grass courts of the Gerry Weber Open at Halle in Germany.

"I can't challenge for the title. I want to improve on grass and that's why I'm going to Halle.

"I need to improve some things to play better on grass and fast courts. My serve-volley game has to get better."

"I like playing on grass a lot, but I know it's not my best surface, it's a little bit fast."

Rafael has played at Wimbledon only once (in 2003) as a 17-year-old. He defeated Croatian Mario Ancic in the opening round, and our very own Lee Childs in the second round, before falling to Paradorn Srichaphan of Thailand in the third round.

Mariano Puerta - who Rafael defeated in the Roland Garros final - believes the young Spaniard is destined for big things. He said:

"I think Nadal wrote a great page in tennis' history with that victory (at Roland Garros) and I'm convinced he will keep doing beautiful things in the sport.

"He's going to become a legend of tennis. I read statements that he wants to win Wimbledon one day.

"And I believe that if it's his objective, he will make it. It doesn't matter how much he will have to work, even if it's difficult, even if this is grass. He will try and commit himself to it.

"He succeeded in doing many things up until now, and it's very probable that he will have a good tournament in Wimbledon this month."


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