Novak & Rafa Both Looming, But Don’t Tell Diego His Draw!
One year ago after losing against Rafael Nadal in the Roland Garros quarter-finals, Diego Schwartzman joked with the media that he did not want to play Nadal in Paris again after losing to him at the clay-court major for third time in four years.
“I want to play maybe Nole [Novak Djokovic] next time,” Schwartzman said, cracking a smile. “But not Rafa.”
The Argentine might get his wish, but he doesn’t know it. After defeating Andrey Kuznetsov 6-3, 1-6, 6-4, 6-2 to reach the second round at Roland Garros, Schwartzman revealed he does not knows his draw and has no interest in finding out. If the 15th seed and top seed Djokovic advance to the fourth round, they will clash for a spot in the quarter-finals.
“I've not seen the draw, so I have no idea who is in my part of the draw. But here you have the best players too, so every single match it's a very tough one,” Schwartzman said. “I think Rafa is in the bottom part of the draw, so no Rafa. But I'm not sure. So I'm not sure if he's close to me or not.”
Nadal is actually in the same quarter of the draw as Djokovic and Schwartzman, which means he could meet his Roland Garros nemesis in the quarter-finals.
“At this time with the social media, it's very difficult. If I made the decision to not see, at the end someone is sending a message with your draw or second round or third round,” Schwartzman said. “[If you know your draw], sometimes you are like flying, thinking about another match, and you [did not] even start the first one.
“So if I have to see, I mean, no problem. But I prefer to just go step by step. [In] Grand Slams I prefer to do that. Too many matches and five-sets matches. If you start to think who is the next one and you are not even playing the first set, it’s difficult. So I prefer to do that.”
So far so good, as Schwartzman dispatched Kuznetsov to set a second-round match against Spaniard Jaume Munar, who defeated Daniel Altmaier 6-1, 6-3, 4-6, 6-3. Although Munar trains at the Rafa Nadal Academy by Movistar, Schwartzman leads their ATP Head2Head series 4-0.
“I have to improve obviously, because today I think I did [a] regular match,” Schwartzman said. “But to beat the best guys on Tour, I have to improve too many things. Let's see what happens in [the] second round against Munar, and then obviously if I win the next match, I have another opportunity to improve.”