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Nadal Speaks On Doping and His Comeback

Rafael Nadal gave a wide ranging interview with France's "L'Equipe" where he spoke out about the ongoing doping trial in his native country Spain.

By Erik Gudris

Rafael Nadal (February 7th, 2013) -- Rafael Nadal gave one of his first in-depth interviews to France's L'Equipe sports daily since his seven month absence from the sport due to injury.

Speaking in Chile, at the ATP event in Vina Del Mar, Nadal spoke out about the ongoing trial of Dr. Eufemiano Fuentes who is currently on trial in Madrid for allegedly running one of the biggest doping rings in sports. Nadal urged that all athletes that worked with Fuentes should have their names publicly released.

"What is happening in Spain, I don't understand it," Nadal told the daily in a translation provided by the Herald Sun. "I don't understand why Dr. Fuentes is not giving names. And I don't understand why the judge has not asked him to do so. I don't understand why we never get to the bottom of these things. We need to clean everything up. I believe this doctor has worked with foreign athletes but because he is Spanish. It is Spanish sport that is being prejudiced."

Nadal won his opening round match against Federico Delbonis yesterday that was the Spaniard’s first singles match since losing to Lukas Rosol at Wimbledon last year. For Nadal, the win came with a mix of emotions.

"Fear? No. Stress, yes, that's to be expected. Relief and joy, certainly," said Nadal who will next face fellow Spaniard Daniel Gimeno-Traver in the quarterfinals tomorrow.

Nadal is taking his comeback one match at a time, but he stressed he still plans to compete not only during the "Golden Swing" of events in Latin and South America but also at the upcoming hard court events at Indian Wells and Miami. While winning this week in Chile would be great for his confidence, Nadal admitted he is aiming to be 100% fit for Monte-Carlo and then Roland Garros where he will seek his eighth title.

"Here in Chile, all that matters is how I feel and how my knee reacts," Nadal said. "To lose here is not a problem. After so long out losing would be the logical thing."

Nadal also revealed he did not watch last month's Australian Open men's final between Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray. Though now ranked No. 5 in the world, Nadal stressed he still believes he can win Roland Garros again even if some are saying he will not be a favorite when the tournament commences in May.

(Photo Credit: AFP/Getty)


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