U.S. Open: Nadal set to defend

Rafael Nadal.

Defending U.S. Open champion and current No. 2-seeded player Rafael Nadal is feeling the heat to take first in this year’s Open — just not as intensely as he was at this time last year.

“The pressure is always there,” he told the crowd at Bar Basque last week, where he was on hand to promote Bacardi’s Champions Drink Responsibly campaign. “Last year was more pressure for me than this year, because last year I felt I had a real chance of winning. Last year I felt ready to win.”

With his win one year ago, the “King of Clay” became the seventh player in history achieve a Grand Slam, and the youngest player in the open era to do so. This year, he’ll take on current No. 1 seed Novak Djokovic in an effort to defend his title, and he won’t let a recent mishap at a Japanese restaurant (Nadal burned two fingers touching a hot plate) — or foot injuries that have threatened to curb his career — get in the way.

“With the injury of my left foot, for moments it was tough — we didn’t know if I would have the chance to be playing,” Nadal said.

And while in town for the Open, Nadal plans to take advantage of all that the city has to offer.

“I have been here in the past, before I came for the U.S. Open, with my family. I know the city very well. When I have the chance I love to walk around, have dinner in good places from here. Probably later I’m gonna go to the theater to watch a musical. I think today [it’s] ‘Mamma Mia.’”

Follow Meredith Engel on Twitter @MeredithatMetro.


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

How to donate during the blood drive at…

The Metro-North Railroad and New York Blood Center are hosting a blood drive at Grand Central Terminal Thursday.

Local

Bloomberg launches $50 million anti-gun violence effort

Former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg plans to spend $50 million on a grassroots anti-gun violence network to challenge the National Rifle Association.

Local

East Village woman fights off rape attempt from…

An East Village woman fought off an attempted rapist that she woke to find standing on her bed over the weekend, police said.

International

Nearly 300 missing after South Korean ferry capsizes

Almost 300 people were missing after a ferry capsized off South Korea Wednesday, in what could be the country's biggest maritime disaster in over 20 years.

Movies

Review: 'Heaven is for Real' tries to be…

The mega-bestseller "Heaven is for Real" becomes a movie that tries to portray wrestling with faith — or at least it tries to try.

Television

Jim Rash talks 'The Writer's Room' and amazing…

For Jim Rash, as the fifth season of "Community" comes to a close, the second season of "The Writer's Room" begins.

Books

Poems from prison: 'How to Survive a Bullet…

Celebrate National Poetry Month with, "'How to Survive a Bullet to the Heart."

The Word

Jenny McCarthy and Donnie Wahlberg are engaged

If Donnie Wahlberg wants to get vaccinated against anything, he should do it soon: he and Jenny McCarthy are engaged, she just announced on "The View."

NHL

Islanders back to rebuilding mode after disappointing season

One season after qualifying for the Stanley Cup playoffs for the first time since 2006-07, the Islanders finished 2013-14 with a 34-37-11 record.

NFL

Jets confident despite Chris Johnson leaving with no…

Jets fans clamored for a playmaker on offense all offseason. It looked like they were going to land that player on Tuesday when Chris Johnson…

NBA

Knicks, Nets rivalry never materialized despite national attention

When the NBA schedule was released, the league anticipated an intense rivalry between the Nets and Knicks with all four games slated for national TV.

NBA

NBA Power Rankings: Are the Spurs frauds? Could…

NBA Power Rankings: Are the Spurs frauds? Could the Mavericks surprise?

Home

3 easy DIY updates for your home

While you're deep into spring cleaning, why not make a few tweaks to give your home a fresh decorative twist? Don't worry, we're not talking…

Food

Martha Stewart's tips for a perfect Easter

Even if your dinner isn't as perfect as hers, you can use her advice.

Home

Steal home decorating tips from stylist and creator…

We hit her up for some space-conscious, budget-friendly design tips.

Wellbeing

Could a facelift give you the edge at…

It's not just women lining up for procedures.