Rafael Nadal Not Interested in GOAT Debate: “Tennis is More Than Grand Slams”

Rafael Nadal secured the 19th Grand Slam title of his career after battling past through a nerve-breaking five-setter 7-5, 6-3, 5-7, 4-6, 6-4 against Daniil Medvedev at the US Open 2019 finals on Sunday.

The victory puts Rafael Nadal one behind Roger Federer’s record of 20 Grand Slam titles. However, the Spaniard stuck to his words as he recited that he is satisfied with what he has already achieved in his career and is not thinking about chasing Federer’s record.

Rafael Nadal said in the post-match press conference, “I don’t look it that way. I always say the same: I would love to be the one who win more, but I am not thinking and I not going to practice every day or not playing tennis for it. I am playing tennis because I love to play tennis.”

The 33-year-old further stressed that he just can’t think of the major tournaments and feels that tennis is more than Grand Slam events. “I can’t just think about Grand Slams, no? Tennis is more than Grand Slams. I need to think about the rest of the things.”

The 35-times ATP Tour Masters 1000 champion also explained that his victory at the Canadian Open, last month was incomparably important for him.

He said, “I play to be happy. Of course, the victory of today makes me super happy. But a few weeks ago I won in Montreal and have been an important moment for me, too. Of course, is not a comparation because is a completely different story.”

Rafael Nadal also acknowledged that the three-way rivalry between him, Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic is good for the game. The Mallorcan continued, “Well, that competition, if that attracts fans and create interest in the people, that’s good for our sport, no? I feel honored to be part of this battle.”

The world No.2 further recapitulate, “But I repeat the same: you can’t be all day looking next to you about if one having more or one having a little bit less because you will be frustrated. All the things that I achieved in my career are much more than what I ever thought and what I ever dream.”

The 19-time Grand Slam champion explained that he would love to have the most number of Grand Slam titles but feels that he will be equally happy even if he fails to break the record.

He concluded, “I would love to be the one who have more, yes. But I really believe that I will not be happier or less happy if that happens or not happen. What gives you happiness is the personal satisfaction that you gave your best. In that way, I am very, very calm, very pleased with myself.”

Published by
Varun Khanna