Sports

Rafael Nadal accepts his new status: 'I'm not as good as I (was) ... Life continues'

  • Rafael Nadal of Spain gestures during the men's singles final match against Andy Murray of Britain at the Madrid Open Tennis tournament in Madrid, Spain, Sunday, May 10, 2015. (AP Photo/Paul White)

    Rafael Nadal of Spain gestures during the men's singles final match against Andy Murray of Britain at the Madrid Open Tennis tournament in Madrid, Spain, Sunday, May 10, 2015. (AP Photo/Paul White)  (The Associated Press)

  • Rafael Nadal of Spain makes a speech after losing to Andy Murray of Britain during the men's final at the Madrid Open Tennis tournament in Madrid, Spain, Sunday, May 10, 2015. (AP Photo/Paul White)

    Rafael Nadal of Spain makes a speech after losing to Andy Murray of Britain during the men's final at the Madrid Open Tennis tournament in Madrid, Spain, Sunday, May 10, 2015. (AP Photo/Paul White)  (The Associated Press)

After a decade at or near the top of tennis, Rafael Nadal can accept that he's no longer dominating.

Speaking at the Italian Open on Tuesday, Nadal says "obviously today I'm not as good as I (was). ... Life has been fantastic with me. Today I'm not winning as much as I did in the past. Life continues."

On Monday, Nadal dropped out of the top five in the ATP rankings for the first time in 10 years. He's struggling to get back to his best after a wrist injury and an appendectomy last season.

He says "I'm No. 6 in the race. It's not a disaster."

Nadal says he's not considering removing Toni Nadal, his uncle, as coach.

He opens Wednesday against Turkish qualifier Marsel Ilhan.