We're not machines - Nadal bemoans time violation warning


Rafael Nadal feels umpires must allow players to "breathe a little" after he was involved in the latest time violation controversy at Roland Garros on Sunday.

A nine-time French Open champion and the hot favourite to win the title once again this year, Nadal breezed into the quarter-finals with a straight-sets thrashing of compatriot Roberto Bautista Agut.

However, the Spaniard did receive two time violation warnings during the match from Carlos Ramos, the same umpire who incensed Novak Djokovic by enforcing a similar penalty in the Serbian's third-round victory over Diego Schwartzman.

In a post-match news conference, Nadal looked to downplay the incident and outlined his respect for umpire Ramos.

However, the former world number one added: "I remember this pressure in the past, because I take time before I serve. I have received pressure when I serve. Sometimes I feel I'm under pressure during the whole match.

"If you want to play well, you have to let players breathe a little. We're not machines. We're not machines that cannot think. That's my viewpoint. 

"Of course I fully respect other views and other points of view. What else can I say? I'm telling you this with some type of sadness, because I don't want to have any problems.

"But this umpire is, I think, trying, in a certain way, to look for my faults, my errors. This is the impression I have.

"What's happened on the court will stay on the court. I respect him a lot."

Nadal was able to reflect far more positively on his progress at Roland Garros thus far. He has yet to drop more than four games in a set, but is prepared for things to get tougher.

"This week was very positive. My level was good throughout the match [against Bautista Agut]. I won quite easily. Therefore, this has given me quite a lot of confidence. I have the impression I'm doing things well. I'm on the right track," he said.

"And yet I fully respect each opponent and I respect the tournament itself, and each situation, as well.

"It's not because things go well for you that everything is going to continue like this. You have to be ready to take the moment when you're down, the more difficult moments. You have to be ready so that you can react to bad moments that might happen."