Matteo Berretini. (Photo by Recep Sakar/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)
Matteo Berretini said he would learn from the experience of playing a Grand Slam Rafael Nadal in the semi-finals at australian open Friday and become a better player.
The Italian seventh seed started late and gave Nadal a two-set advantage before hitting his stride but going down 6-3, 6-2, 3-6, 6-3 in 2h 55min at Rod Laver Arena .
Berrettini set personal milestones in the big first of the year, becoming the first Italian to reach the Australian Open semi-finals while making his third Grand Slam semi-final.
Despite his loss, Berrettini is guaranteed to reach a new career ranking of number six next week, and had he beaten Nadal in Melbourne he would have moved him up to number five.
Last year’s Wimbledon runner-up, Berrettini is taking many positives from his best Australian Open in five trips to Melbourne.
“It was a good race. I have a lot of things I can improve on and a lot of things I did well,” said the 25-year-old.
“I’m proud of what I’ve done. But I guess in a way it’s good that I still have room for improvement.
“I know my level is increasing. I think for the third and fourth sets my level of tennis was really high.
“Rafa had to play his best tennis to be with me, and that’s what great champions normally do. When you level up, they’re there with you.
“So it’s time for me to play as many of those kinds of games as possible to learn from those games and next time I want to be ready for them.”
Berrettini said that during the first two sets he struggled against Nadal.
“It was my first time playing with the roof. The conditions were different. I struggled. I couldn’t really find the rhythm and the conditions were a bit different,” he said. declared.
“It took me some time to adapt, but at the same time Rafa was playing very well.
“So I learned that you have to be ready at all times, and I’ve learned that every day since I started playing tennis. Today he was much better than me.”