Thursday, December 1, 2022

“I hope we play with a full hall and a great atmosphere on the court”

Roberto Bautista and the rest of the members of the Spanish team are already prepared to face the Davis Cup. The tournament starts this Tuesday, and ours will have their turn on Wednesday, in the quarterfinals against Croatia. The tennis player from Castellón attends The opinion before the start of the Final Phase in Malaga, “a special competition” in which he hopes to play “with a full hall and a great atmosphere on the court.”

How has your preparation for the Davis Cup been?

Here everyone prepares with great enthusiasm, Davis is one of my favorite competitions. I prepare conscientiously. I try to get there as well as possible. In tennis nothing is two for two, I do my part to be the best possible.

How important is the loss of Carlos Alcaraz, number 1 in the world, for everyone?

Imagine… Having number 1 is important, not being there is a very important loss, but luckily Spain has many good tennis players. Any of us can compete well and be at the highest level.

Alcaraz’s absence is bad for the team, but it gives you a greater role. Likes?

In the new format, everything is very tight, there are only 3 points, there is little margin for error. We are all important. The singles, the doubles… they are all important.

There will be absences from the top 10, but it will undoubtedly be a high-level tournament.

The level is going to be very high, in the Davis Cup the best tennis players are there. Each one wants to do the best and give the most to their country. All teams will be at their best. We have to prepare as well as possible.

What do you expect from Croatia, your quarterfinal rival? Cilic, Coric, a good doubles…

The toughest team that could touch us has touched us, Croatia has a very complete team, they have good doubles. It will be a very disputed tie.

They dream of winning it again at home…

Here you have to be aware of the difficulty of the Davis Cup, the rivals… The first round is going to be very tough. It will be the most complicated, let’s hope to pass that tie and then we’ll see.

The environment can play in favor.

Of course, playing at home is special, it gives you extra motivation, with your public, with your people… The encouragement of the stands, we are lucky enough to play in Spain, it has to give us a plus.

There is a lot of atmosphere in the city, posters, flags, the decorated Martín Carpena. There are few tickets left on sale and a packed pavilion is expected. The Davis atmosphere is unique in tennis.

It is a special competition, I really like to play. You have a lot of responsibility, you have a team behind you, the responsibility of defending the colors of your country. It is a different, special tournament.

The format was changed a few years ago with the arrival of Gerard Piqué and Kosmos. Likes?

I think they are trying to make Davis a viable competition. They are doing different things, you have to agree and find a date on the calendar because of how important it is, we arrived with the reservation. It is a unique competition, very beautiful, you have to find its place, you have to give it the importance it deserves.

Speaking of the calendar… it coincides with the World Cup. At the same time as the tie with Croatia, Spain is playing against Costa Rica in Qatar. Do you think it will affect the stands?

I don’t know… people will have to choose. Watch Spain on TV or watch live tennis. It is a unique competition. What can be lived in the Martín Carpena has to be very beautiful. People have to come cheer, the team needs it. Hopefully we will play with a full arena and a great atmosphere on the track.

Finally, another casualty for Spain, although it was already known, is that of Rafa Nadal. How does he see you? At the end of her career or with a rope for a while?

The track conditions of the Finals are the worst for him. Never give Rafa for dead, or Djokovic. They have shown that they can come back whenever they want. If he is healthy and well, he will continue to compete.

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