Rafael Nadal debuted on the Tour twenty years ago. Two decades later, the Spaniard is still among the best players in the world, working hard to improve and enduring multiple injuries. Two and a half years ago Rafa was asked to build his perfect player.
Rafael Nadal mentioned some of his great rivals and some more players who fit into his module thanks to his unique shots or his mental strength.Rafa highlighted the best shots of his great rivals, Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray.
The Spaniard also mentioned Dominic Thiem, David Ferrer, Ivo Karlovic and Gael Monfils as an image of his perfect player formed. Furthermore, he chose himself in the area of determination, saying that he has always given his best despite injuries and setbacks.
“As for the reverse, I have to pick Novak Djokovic. He can defend superbly from that side and attack down the line and across the court, with plenty of options during rallies. I have to pick Roger Federer’s forehand as he picks up the ball very early and creates winners from anywhere on the court.
Roger can hit his right hand flat or add spin to it; he is a powerful weapon. Ivo Karlovic’s serve is the most powerful opening shot in the game. When Ivo serves well, as it happens in almost every match, the returner cannot create any chance before the tie break.
I would pick myself in the determination segment. I’ve had the proper resolution throughout my career after all my injuries. I have continued to practice with passion to achieve my goals and fight in every match. Fitness-wise, my pick is Dominic Thiem.
Gael Monfils must be the fastest player, and I think Andy Murray has the best shot selection.”
Rafa Nadal is a 22-time Grand Slam champion
In his autobiography, Rafael Nadal: My Story, the former World Number 1, has revealed that his uncle never received any paychecks from him for his coaching services.
Talking about this, he said, “One thing would not have happened without the other. Toni has never received any money from me or from anyone in the family for the lifelong attention he’s dedicated to me, but he’s been able to do it because he owns half of my father’s business, and takes half the profits, without doing any of the work”.
Further, he went on to add, “It’s been a fair exchange because I would never have had anything like the same hours of coaching from Toni if my father had not worked with such purpose all his life”.