SIDEBAR: Federer flu doesn't fool Nadal
( dpa )- Rafael Nadal won't be lulled into writing off Roger Federer after the Swiss missed a week of pre-Australian Open training due to a stomach virus.
For the world number two Spaniard, a few light hits will be enough to propel the undisputed top man in the game back to his lethal best.
"If Roger plays one match, two matches, that's enough for him," Nadal said Saturday, two days before the start of the first major tournament of the season.
"Normally he doesn't have a lot of problems in the first rounds, so he can get the rhythm in these first two rounds. And later, that's fine."
The 21-year-old said that despite winning just one game in his Chennai final last weekend against Russian Mikhail Youzhny , he is "very happy" with his form.
"I was very tired (in the Chennai final). I had that terrible semi-final, four-hour match," Nadal recalled.
"I had less than 24 hours for recovery and went to sleep late because I finished the match late. It was tough to recover. Mikhail played good tennis, and he beat me very easily."
Nadal said that despite a heavy training regime over the holidays at home in Mallorva , little has really changed in his big game. "In one month, it's impossible to improve a lot. But you can work to improve."
Nadal has hopes of improving his showing from 2007, where he reached the last eight but was unimpressed by his game.
"Last year probably was worst year, I played bad tennis," he said before starting the Open against a qualifier. "This year I am arriving well, practicing well. I had some matches in Chennai. So I hope will be fine for Monday."