Rafa Nadal chose not to answer a reporter's question after losing to Novak Djokovic

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World number one Rafael Nadal exited the Wimbledon tournament after an epic contest against Novak Djokovic in the semi-finals on Saturday.

The five-set thriller ended with Djokovic registering a victory with the scoreline 6-4, 3-6, 7-6[11-9], 3-6, 10-8.

Nadal has taken the defeat in his stride and accepted that his Serbian counterpart was the better player on the day.

But he did not hold back while addressing a particular issue that may have been vital in the outcome of the tie.

The duo resumed their match at 13:00 GMT yesterday afternoon as the Wimbledon curfew forced the showdown to be postponed on Friday.

As per official rules, the tournament is allowed to run matches until 11pm in agreement with the local council.

And play resumed on Centre Court under the roof on Saturday, despite it being a warm and sunny day.


This irked the Spaniard while the authorities explained their stance, stating it was done to maintain the consistency in the conditions with Friday.

During his post-match interview, Nadal looked visibly unhappy when asked if it made sense to play under the roof.

“No, I will not talk more about this," responded Nadal. "If not, you [the media] are going to write about this.

“It doesn’t sound right, I believe that if the tournament is an outdoor tournament, and more unfortunately the match before lasted longer.


“We start without the roof, we stop when there is no light and we continue the following day, because the tournament is like this.”

The 32-year-old elaborated further on the topic.

Nadal continued: “In that moment I understood the rationale, but I did not understand that we would play indoor today unless we both agreed to play outdoor, and evidently, we did not agree."

“It was difficult for me to adapt to the indoor court, I didn’t see too well. I couldn’t read how the ball was coming.

“During the night there is some kind of semi-darkness, but during the day the visibility is better. The court is a good court, but you don’t see too well when the roof is closed.”

This was the first time since 2011 that Nadal has managed to reach the semis and he can surely take some solace from the fact that only three players have been able to beat him on tour this year – Maric Cilic, Dominic Thiem and Djokovic.

Day Twelve: The Championships - Wimbledon 2018

The 11-time French Open champion reflected upon his journey in this summer’s grass court event in Wimbledon, saying: “I played great. Reaching the semifinals, after a while without being there.

“I won some great matches, especially in that quarter-finals against Del Potro. Today was another great match.”

“I feel that I have lost an opportunity to try to win another very important title for my career. But that’s it.

“I think I have done great work. It's difficult to come back after injuries for a long time and have these kind of results, so I am proud of myself.”

Rafael Nadal
Novak Djokovic
Roger Federer
Serena Williams

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