Rafael Nadal said his epic win over Stefanos Tsitsipas in the Barcelona Open final can be good for his confidence.
Nadal and Tsitsipas played out a completely absorbing final on Sunday, with Nadal eventually winning it 6-4, 6-7, 7-5 after three hours and 38 minutes.
It was the longest best-of-three ATP Tour final since such statistics started being recorded in 1991, and the match was on a knife-edge right up until the final game.
Nadal, though, says there is still a lot of room for improvement in his game as he works towards Roland Garros in early June.
“It is important for me," Rafael Nadal said. "It is important for my confidence. It is important for the title, by itself.
“It is an important title in my career, achieving another ATP 500 [title] and, additionally, one of the best ATP 500s in the history of our sport with a big tradition in Barcelona. It is great.
“I think I have been able to play better and better during the whole week [in] every single match and today was a little bit better than yesterday. I have room to keep improving. I was not perfect.
“I really believe that I can play better than what I am doing on clay and I really hope that the victory of today is going to help me to raise a little bit [my] level that I need today to fight for the next couple of events that I am going to play.”
“I have not been able to play a lot of competitive matches for the past couple of months.
"It is true that matches like today make me feel better physically and more ready for the long battles.
“I felt quite well on the court about my physical performance. I have been working hard at home to be ready for this stuff.”
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