It's been a while since I last had the chance to post some interviews. Two months, to be precise, during which practically nothing was to be heard from Mr. Nalbandian. Also not concerning the big question of whether he'd go on playing. He will - that much became known ahead of the round of interviews David gave yesterday at the Inés Gorrochategui Academy. But now, there's finally the chance to hear more from him, about what has happened in the meantime, as well as about his plans and goals for the next season.
There are two interviews that I've translated. The one below, by Fabian Sacarelli for MundoD, and an additional, shorter one that you'll find in this backdated post here.
So, without further ado, here's what David had to say.
Q: It's been a long break.You're probably wondering why the surface is even an issue with this tie when they usually play their home ties on clay. But it's different this time and the only reason I can think of is
David: Yeah, though I didn't stop completely. I kept doing things for my fitness, two or three times a week so that I didn't lose what [fitness] I still had and can begin with the pre-season for next year in December. If I want to achieve my goals I have to start now, or next week if the circumstances allow it. So the idea was that if I recover and don't get to play anymore at the end of the year I'd stay in shape in order to not lose as much [fitness] and start the pre-season not totally out of practice.
Q: And it was good to get rid of the bitter taste, left by the Davis Cup [semifinal] defeat.
David: That weekend was tough. Because of the defeat, because of the goals that we had, because of everything. After that I wanted to try and play some events before the end of the season and that didn't work out, either. But the truth is that I still want to go on [playing] next year and face some important challenges. That's pretty much what I've planned but it didn't cross my mind after the defeat. I know that I can still fight and that's what I'll aim to do next year.
Q: But you were disappointed.
David: I wasn't exactly happy, the week after the defeat. I was pissed off because of the injury and not being able to play the tie. But I know that things like that happen and you have to deal with them.
Q: Without pressure in terms of the ranking or the results, perhaps you'll enjoy being on the Tour more.
David: I hope I'll enjoy the tournaments ahead. When you walk onto the court you want to win and the rest moves into the background. The idea is to enjoy it because it's a great sport that has given so much to me. Right now, I do [enjoy it] but when I'll lose the desire it'll be difficult to go on playing.
Q: The pre-season is going to determine how you start your schedule?
David: I'll do the pre-season in mid-December. Whether I'll go to Australia or not will depend on the surface they choose for the Davis Cup (in February against Germany). I'll have to wait for that but the plan is to play the tournaments in South America on clay. If I don't go to Australia, I'll do the pre-season on clay, and if I go I'll do it on hardcourt.
- Delpo. Who usually skips the first round of Davis Cup and doesn't play the Golden Swing but prefers to play on hardcourt, ahead of Indian Wells and Miami. I think that considering hardcourt for this tie is an attempt to include Delpo with the team.
Q: You're planning your schedule around the Davis Cup.
David: Yeah, it's what I'm going to start the year with, at the end of January and the first days of February [the first round takes place February 1-3].
Q: You'll pick the tournaments that you'll play, based on what?
David: Memories, things I like. Apart from that it also depends on the ranking, which ones I'm going to enter. Until the Miami Masters I have everything planned and then I'll see which part of the European swing I'm going to play.
(Irma Montiel/La Nacion)
Q: You're going to play on clay a lot.
David: Yeah, because if the Davis Cup tie in February is held on clay then it's not good to play on hardcourt ahead of it. It's practically certain that I'm going to play the tournament in Buenos Aires and the South American events.
Q: In the meantime, you've made an appearance in polo.
David: I suck (laughs) but I have fun together with Adolfito (Cambiaso), who invited me to play. The opportunity arose because I wasn't playing tennis and it was fun, we had a good team.
Q: You're really bad at polo?
David: Yeah, compared to them...
Q: But Cambiaso is like Maradona.
David: Yeah, but that's the reality I have to deal with (laughs). I have to be aware of it.
Q: After tennis, will there be more than just tennis?
David: Yeah, in life you move through different stages, and tennis is one of them. You can't spend your whole life, playing professionally. I already have several activities that I could do tomorrow. Sport is going to be one of them because I've always liked it and I still do, also other sports apart from tennis, polo, golf, motorsports.
Q: Other things outside of sports?
David: I'm a restless guy and I'm certainly going to do something. Right now, there are several things I could pursue every day, and I don't because I'm still playing tennis. The foundation for example, different undertakings that require time and are now in the background.
Q: How did it make you feel to see Stepanek, almost 34 years old, celebrate having won the Davis Cup?
David: It's great, a reward for all the effort, the sacrifice and the perseverance. They played all year with two players but they had a very good year and didn't get injured.
Q: What did they have that Argentina didn't?
David: It was a very tough tie. Had Juan Martin played on Sunday, they would've been fine. With the whole team there, we're better than them. We have a good team, we have to see how the encounters pan out but for the coming season we have a difficult draw.
Q: Germany will be a tough opponent.
David: Yeah, it's a very tough tie. We must all try and work towards having the best possible team.
Q: What would a satisfying year 2013 look like for you?
David: I think being inside the Top50. I can always get there if I get lucky in terms of injuries and don't get a tough draw at the big events. [Getting inside the Top] 20 or 30, that would be a good year.