“We Need to Suffer and We Need to Fight”: Rafael Nadal Reacts on Reaching Australian Open 2022 Finals

Published 01/28/2022, 3:49 AM EST
Tennis – Australian Open – Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia – January 28, 2022 Spain’s Rafael Nadal reacts during his semi final match against Italy’s Matteo Berrettini REUTERS/Morgan Sette

Rafael Nadal is on the verge of history. Nadal won his semi-final game against Matteo Berrettini 6-3, 6-2, 3-6, 6-3 and made it into his 29th Grand Slam finals. This will be Rafa’s 6th Australian Open final, while he awaits the winner of Stefanos Tsitsipas and Daniil Medvedev.

The Spanish legend is the first finalist confirmed in the men’s singles category with gutsy and classy tennis play. Nadal played with intensity and determination in the game. Berrettini had little chance in the game, though he caused a bit of trouble by winning the 3rd set. But the experienced one between the two, Nadal, came up strong in the 4th set and wrapped up the match.

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The 34-year-old Nadal seemed well prepared for the match as he exploited Matteo’s weaknesses throughout the game. Rafa had just 5 aces in the whole match against 14 from the Italian’s. He was rather dominant at the net, winning 12 of 16 net points in the match.

While both players were effective in their serves and volleys, world number 5 had just 19 unforced errors in a total of 204 point semifinal. Nadal maintained his cool till the final shot of the game and on the first of two match points, he put the pressure on Matteo Berrettini.

WATCH: Rafael Nadal Gets Emotional After Reaching 29th Grand Slam Finals at Australian Open 2022

Matteo hit the return into the net and Nadal made it to the Australian Open final after 2019. Though Nadal has won just once (2009) in the previous five final appearances in the Australian Open, he seems in the best shape and well prepared for the tournament this season.

Rafael Nadal on reaching Finals of 2022 Australian Open Final

Nadal looked at the packed crowd of supporters after the win and gave his most cheerful “Yes” ever in this tournament. The crowd was already on their feet congratulating the Spanish ace.

After the match, Another Legend Jim Courier took Rafa to the center stage and Rafa gave his reaction to the match about how he started the match with a plan and how he was happy with his 1st two sets’ gameplay. He also complemented Matteo’s character in the third set, the way he made his small comeback.

Rafa praised Berrettini’s down-the-line shots, which troubled him in the 3rd and 4th set. Then, commenting on conditions in the arena, he said that he would prefer outdoor more than indoor games. But the crowd, the atmosphere, and the noises made the game enjoyable.

He also commented on his uncertainty before the tournament, saying, “You know what, a month-and-a-half I didn’t know if I was going to play tennis. It doesn’t matter if it is outdoors or indoors today. I just wanted to play and do my best.”

He then went on to say, “We need to suffer and we need to fight, that’s the only way to be where I am today. It means a lot to be in the final”

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When asked about the possible record of 21 Grand Slam Wins, he reacted with a huge smile on his face and said, “For me, it’s all about the Australian Open more than anything else. It is just an amazing event that as I said a couple of days ago now, I have been a little bit lucky in my career with some injuries.”

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“At times I play good finals against Novak (Djokovic) in 2012 and Roger (Federer) in 2017. I was lucky to win once in 2009, but I never thought about another chance in 2022. Just enjoy the victory today and after that try my best.” [h/t theGuardian.com]

Nadal is a true legend of the game. He is still playing at the highest level and giving more than 100% to the game. He has a great conversion record of 20 wins from 28 finals so far. It would be really great to see him lifting the 2022 Australian Open.

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Kunal Pradeep Chawda

149 articles

Kunal Chawda is a tennis author at EssentiallySports. Holding a bachelors degree in IT engineering and masters in marketing, Kunal is obsessed with tennis, soccer and basketball. He has intensely followed sports since the year 2002 and also competed in his collegiate days.

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