Rafael Nadal has put forward his desire to claim his maiden title in the 15th attempt at the next week’s ATP World Tour Finals 2019 at the O2 Arena in London.
Nadal, who has qualified for the ATP World Tour Finals for the 15th time in his career, quipped that he needs to be fit to play the year-end event in order to win it as the Spaniard has only actually played on eight occasions due to various injuries that troubled him throughout his career.
“First of all, I have to play. It’s true I think I’ve qualified for 15 years but I don’t know how many years I’ve been able to complete the tournament,” Nadal said in the pre-tournament press conference on the media day ahead of the Nitto ATP Finals 2019 on Friday.
“I qualified more times than I had chances to compete at 100%. At the same time, I would love to have this trophy with me but I can’t complain about all the other things I did. I’m not in a position to ask for more,” the 33-year-old noted.
Rafael Nadal’s most recent appearance at the ATP Finals was back in 2017 when he played only one round-robin match, where he was defeated by David Goffin.
The 19-time Grand Slam champion has twice made the finals in 2010 and 2013 when he lost to Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic respectively. However, the Spaniard aims to produce good chances this year and wants to ‘keep achieving things’.
The Mallorcan continued, “I want to keep achieving things, this is one of the things I didn’t make happen I want to keep producing chances, playing well. I hope I have my chances to have a good result.”
Rafael Nadal is also battling with Novak Djokovic for the year-end No.1 position in the ATP ranking and the 33-year-old is close to retaining the position as even if Nadal withdrew from the event or failed to win a group match, Djokovic would still need to reach the final to claim the year-end ranking.
“Of course, I’d love to be year-end No. 1,” Nadal told the reporters. “There’s no complaint about that. It wasn’t my personal goal because I didn’t follow that thing.”
He further added: “It’s the right moment in your career to define your personal goals. My personal goal is to try and stay here, to compete here as long as possible. That doesn’t mean I’m not trying to be No. 1 – not at all. I’m not following that goal.”
“I’d love to be equal with Roger and with Novak with the five year-end No. 1 spot for the end of the year. It would be something fantastic for me but honestly, I can’t complain. I need to be focused on my real goal. The goal is to put me in a position to play 100%. If that happens my goals will be very different,” Nadal concluded.