Rios says he can be world number one again


SANTIAGO, Reuters

Former world number one Marcelo Rios said in an interview on Friday that he believed he could return to the top of the rankings.

Rios, who was out of action for five months at the turn of the year following a thigh operation, also criticised Chilean officials over the sacking of Davis Cup captain Patricio Cornejo.

“I’ve always said that if I did it once why can’t I do it again,” he told the Santiago daily La Tercera.

“I would love to be number one again. I know I can do it but I have to take it step by step…I have the determination and will and I feel that I have recovered what I lost.”

Rios, who was interviewed at the Saddlebrook club in Florida where he has been training to improve his fitness for the past five weeks, said his aim next year was to get back into the top 10.

“It’s a reasonable and fair target and one that I can meet,” said the often temperamental Chilean, adding that he felt he had matured in the past year.

Rios’ generally upbeat mood changed only when he was asked about Chile’s Davis Cup team.

“There’s no reason for Cornejo’s sacking,” he said.

“The directors make decisions without asking anybody…they should talk straight. I heard about the change through a newspaper which a friend brought me.”

“I think the federation are very disorganised and don’t know what they’re doing.”