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Back trouble made me serve more slowly - Rafa Nadal

AS AS 31/05/2014 Alejandro Delmás

After victory over Leonardo Mayer saw Rafa Nadal seal his 31st consecutive win at Roland Garros since 2009, the Spaniard admitted: “I dropped the intensity on my serve and I served more slowly than usual, because on the first day of the tournament, and the second too, I felt my back a bit.

“Everyone knows that I had a problem in Australia. At a tournament like this, things can always appear. Let’s hope that isn’t the case this time. I played with tape on my back, but I didn’t call the trainer at any point.”

Nadal serves on his way to victory over Leonardo Mayer on Saturday. © Getty Images Nadal serves on his way to victory over Leonardo Mayer on Saturday.

Nadal also discussed again receiving a warning for a time violation from Pascal Maria, an umpire he is often penalised by for time infringements. “I thought what he did was unfair,” the 27-year-old said. “This time there was no reason for it. I restricted myself to raising an eyebrow, serving and winning the set and the match. [You have to] listen, accept it and not complain. But when I’m playing with Pascal, I don’t even go for the towel anymore.

“This sport is about understanding and thinking about the show. I don’t understand the sport from this other perspective. No matter what I do, with Pascal Maria there’s always something.”

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