“Really Admire Their Humble Personalities”: NHL Star Reveals Admiration for Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal

Published 08/08/2021, 3:25 AM EDT
GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – SEPTEMBER 18: Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal of Team Europe react as they are presented to the crowd at Palais Eynard during the official welcome ceremony prior to the Laver Cup 2019 at Palexpo, on September 18, 2019 in Geneva, Switzerland. The Laver Cup will see six players from the rest of the World competing against their counterparts from Europe. Team World is captained by John McEnroe and Team Europe is captained by Bjorn Borg. The tournament runs from September 20-22. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images for Laver Cup)


Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer are inspirations for many athletes in the world, old and young. And Danish ice hockey player, Lars Eller, is no different. Nadal was playing in Washington last week when Eller had the opportunity of meeting and watching him play live.

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Lars Eller has been an avid viewer of Rafa and Federer, and tennis, in general. The Danish star plays a lot of tennis during offseason and has followed the Grand Slams regularly.

Tennis – Wimbledon – All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club, London, Britain – July 3, 2021 Switzerland’s Roger Federer reacts during his third round match against Britain’s Cameron Norrie REUTERS/Toby Melville

Big 3 playing in the same era is “the most impressive thing” – Lars Eller

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It was somewhat a fanboy moment for Lars Eller when he met Rafael Nadal after winning his second-round match against Jack Sock in Washington. The Dane presented Nadal with a jersey of the Washington Capitals, Eller’s team.

I’ve always enjoyed watching Federer. I think he’s just amazing on so many levels. I admire him as a person [and] as an athlete.

“But the same thing with Nadal. I really admire their humble personalities, and the fact that they’ve been able to stay on top of their sport for so many years—you know, decades.

“I think that’s the most impressive thing, to have them playing, Djokovic, all three of them in the same era,” said Eller as reported by Washington Citypaper.

Eller watched Nadal’s 2008 Wimbledon Championships final against Roger Federer, a match that went on to be a five-set thriller. He believes that match was “one of the best sports games of all time.”

Watch this story: Tennis Rivals Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer’s Top Funny Moments

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Aug 4, 2021; Washington, DC, USA; Rafael Nadal of Spain celebrates during a match against Jack Sock of the United States (not pictured) during the Citi Open at Rock Creek Park Tennis Center. Mandatory Credit: Scott Taetsch-USA TODAY Sports

Rafael Nadal faces tough draw at the National Bank Open in Toronto

Rafael Nadal is the second seed at the National Bank Open, beginning tomorrow. He will be having a tough road ahead in the men’s singles draw with a tough opponent in every round. He faces a potential test from Lloyd Harris in the second round; the South African beat him at the Citi Open last week in the third round.

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However, even after beating Harris, Nadal will be facing a serious test from Nick Kyrgios in the third round. There is no end to the road that Nadal chooses as the rope is a thin line he will be walking on. A slight mistake can send him out of the tournament, jeopardizing his US Open preparations.

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Suchit Halder

270 articles

Suchit Halder is a Tennis writer at EssentiallySports. He is currently pursuing a Bachelor's degree in Management Studies from St Xavier's College, Mumbai. With a keen interest in writing and sports, Suchit has previously worked as a content writer at Football Counter and worked with the content team for Delhi Capitals during IPL 2021.

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