ATP Tour

Nadal lauds Murray's choice

2014-06-11 21:00
Rafael Nadal (AFP)

Halle - Recently crowned nine-time French Open champion Rafael Nadal has said on Wednesday that his rival and friend Andy Murray can benefit from his surprise decision to appoint Amelie Mauresmo as his new coach.

The British number one and Wimbledon champion advanced comfortably in his first match under Mauresmo's watch on Wednesday as he defeated Frenchman Paul-Henri Mathieu 6-4, 6-4 to reach the third round in his defence of the Queen's Club title in London.

However his decision to appoint the 34-year-old Mauresmo, who won the Australian Open and Wimbledon in 2006 as well as reaching world number one in 2004, was met with curiousity, following Murray's split with former coach Ivan Lendl.

Nadal, who won a record fifth straight title at Roland Garros last Sunday, is in action at the Gerry Weber Open in Halle this week and defended the 2012 US Open champion's decision.

"Andy is already 27-years-old. So everybody knows what's better for him and everybody wants to do whatever you want in your team," said the Spanish world number one.

"Andy is a great guy and if he chose Amelie for now, it's because he thinks she's the person he really needs and can help him more to find the goals and objectives he wants to achieve," added Nadal, who took his Grand Slam total to fourteen with his victory in the French capital.

"It's true that it's something new to contract a woman for the men's Tour but in the end Amelie has great experience in the world of tennis, she's a great champion so I don't see a problem, I think he'll be fine.

"Andy is growing his level again, I think he played better in Rome (lost in quarter-finals against Nadal), then he was able to make the semi-finals of Roland Garros (again lost to Nadal) which is a very positive result for him, I think.

"That will give him confidence now for probably the most important part of the year for him which is the grass court season.

"Wimbledon is always very special for him and after winning the year before." added Nadal, on Murray becoming the first British player in 77 years to lift the Wimbledon crown in 2013.

Read more on:    atp tour  |  gerry weber open  |  rafael nadal  |  tennis
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