‘Very Difficult to Sustain’: Diego Schwartzman Shares Why Rafael Nadal is the Most Imposing of the Big Three

Published 12/23/2021, 8:30 AM EST
Spain’s Rafael Nadal shakes hands with Argentina’s Diego Schwartzman after winning the semi final match REUTERS/Charles Platiau

Rafael Nadal recently made his comeback to professional tennis this month after a long hiatus. The Spaniard had exited the tour before the US Open and made his return in Abu Dhabi.


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His comeback run was a title defense attempt at the Mubadala World Tennis Championship, where he fell to Andy Murray. However, he remains one of the biggest draws on the circuit. In fact, for other players on the tour, Rafael Nadal is still a dominant and fearsome adversary.

Argentinian tennis star Diego Schwartzman revealed how he felt about seeing Nadal on the other side of the net.


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For Schwartzman, Rafael Nadal is the most imposing opponent

In an interview with Argentinian outlet Filo News, Diego Schwartzman talked about the Big Three in tennis. He shared how he had to play with Djokovic, Federer, and Rafael Nadal a lot when he moved into the top 20 and 10 ranks.

Then, Schwartzman talks about Rafael Nadal. He praises Nadal’s dominance on clay- “On clay, it is almost impossible to follow the rhythm and dominance that he (Nadal) has,” he shares.

“Rafa is the one who imposes the most respect on you when entering the field,” the 29-year-old shares. It is like you enter more defeated.” Moreover, Schwartzman even compares Nadal’s attitude as an opponent to that of Roger Federer.


“Federer being so relaxed, sometimes he gives you a game,” he shares. On the other hand, it is an entirely different story against El Nino. “You enter the Nadal match, and it seems that everything from the first point to the last point, is the last in his career.

“It imposes so much respect on you,” he expresses. “It is very difficult to sustain what he does from minute zero.”


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Playing against the Big Three was a boon for Schwartzman

Schwartzman shared how he began playing against Djokovic, Nadal, and Federer after he entered the Top 100 in rankings. Moreover, their meetings increased when he entered the top 20, and the top 10, eventually.


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Schwartzman is grateful for having played against the best in the sport. For him, it was the best thing to have happened to him.

Tennis – French Open – Roland Garros, Paris, France – June 9, 2021 Argentina’s Diego Schwartzman with Spain’s Rafael Nadal after losing their quarter-final match REUTERS/Gonzalo Fuentes

Then, he also shared the difficulty one faces when playing against World No. 1 Novak Djokovic. For Schwartzman, it seems like the Serb plays with a joystick, the way his movements are so quick and fluid.


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Despite being opponents on tour, the young tennis star speaks with respect and awe when he talks about three of the greatest players of this generation, and perhaps all time.

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Samarveer Singh

251 articles

Samarveer Singh is a tennis writer at EssentiallySports. Holding a degree in English Literature and a diploma in Fitness Sciences and Training, Samarveer is obsessed with tennis and basketball. He is also an automotive writer at HotCars.