Rafael Nadal: 'It demands you at all times'

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Rafael Nadal: 'It demands you at all times'

Juan Martin Del Potro, 33, played what would be the last game of his career on Tuesday night in Buenos Aires. Del Potro has been dealing with a knee injury since 2018, he underwent four surgeries but was unable to recover and play injury-free.

Juan Martin's last standout season came in 2018 when he claimed the first Masters 1000 title, played in the US Open final and became world number three. Del Potro qualified for the ATP Finals for the fifth time of his career that year after beating Karen Khachanov in the second round in Beijing.

Juan Martin defeated Karen 6-4, 7-6 for his 45th victory of the season which took him to London, where he was joined by Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic. The Argentine made his ATP Finals debut as a 20-year-old in 2008, defeating Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in tight straight sets and losing to Novak Djokovic and Nikolay Davydenko to end his career debut at the round-robin stage.

A year later, Juan Martín was the contender for the title at the London ATP Finals. The Argentine defeated Fernando Verdasco, Robin Soderling and Roger Federer to set the title match against Nikolay Davydenko who defeated him 6-3, 6-4.

After struggling with injuries in the years that followed, del Potro returned to London in 2012. The Argentine began the tournament with a loss against David Ferrer before ousting Roger Federer and Janko Tipsarevic to secure a place in the semi-finals, where he lost to Novak.


Rafa is very particular with his on-court rituals

In a recent interview at Cantabria Labs, Rafael Nadal talked about his views on tennis, calling it a "mentally aggressive sport" that requires a lot of focus. In the interview, Nadal referred to tennis as a demanding sport, highlighting the need to stay focused in order to succeed.

The 35-year-old revealed that his much-talked-about rituals help him to concentrate in the heat of battle. "Tennis is a mentally aggressive sport. It demands you at all times. One has to be able to find a way to be focused on what one is doing almost 100%, without being distracted by external things," said Nadal.

"I achieve that state of concentration by doing all the rituals I do. I don't know if it's something positive or negative, but it works for me. I have some rituals that help me feel focused on what I'm doing. It's the way to differentiate when I'm competing from the rest of my life," added the World No. 5.