Spanish tennis superstar Rafael Nadal said he loved to practice as a child, but never imitated other players. The 35-year-old Nadal became an all-time great player, winning 20 Grand Slams and becoming No. 1 in the world. "When I was a kid, I loved practice so much that I spent a lot of time on the court, but I've never copied other players.
To be honest, that doesn't mean I don't look at others. I watch other players and examine how they make their game succeed," Nadal told Number Web." Not only by copying others, but by speculating their thoughts behind their game, I embrace the essence that suits my style of play.
Where you stand on the court, how you move, how you hit... I've watched thousands of videos on YouTube to inspire me. If there is a clue to being the best, you should always chase the innovative ideas in the game. When you lose your edge due to aging, you can make up for it with new ideas."
Nadal, now ranked No. 6 in the world, is determined to make a successful comeback in 2022. In August, Nadal prematurely ended his season due to a persistent foot problem. Nadal has had a couple of successful comebacks to tennis and knows what it takes to get back to his best game.
"(I wasn't expecting the success that I have now, but) I've had a difficult moment of uncertainty due to injuries and I got over it, that makes winning more special."
Latest update on Rafa Nadal
Rafael Nadal called time on his season in August after failing to recover from a chronic foot problem.
Nadal's foot issue has been bothering him since 2005 and resurfaced at Roland Garros earlier this year. Nadal stressed that he wants to fully recover from his injury before making any decisions on his comeback. "I want to recover from the injury to return in top condition," Rafael Nadal was quoted as saying by Heraldo.
"I don't know when I'll play again, I work a lot every day, I follow a specific plan, obviously with a marked road map and very clear objectives." He added that he is leaving no stone unturned in his recovery, and expressed hope of being able to play at a high level.
"I won't say what the goals are," Nadal added, "because there are things that I can't control one hundred percent, but inside my head I am clear about what my goals are and I trust that things will follow a positive course to be able to try to compete.
I work a lot every day to try first, recover, and second, when I am recovered to be prepared to play again in full condition."