'Rafael Nadal is on the cusp of tennis immortality', says former Top 5

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'Rafael Nadal is on the cusp of tennis immortality', says former Top 5

Rafael Nadal became the protagonist of a fabulous start to the season. After opening his season with a victory at the ATP 250 in Melbourne, the Spanish phenomenon literally blew the bank at the Australian Open. In a tournament that had often been hostile to him in the past, the former world number 1 achieved one of the most incredible feats of his entire career.

The 35-year-old Majorcan recovered two sets of disadvantage from Daniil Medvedev in the final, finding the energy to overturn a challenge that is now almost lost. By winning the Happy Slam for the second time, Rafa overtook Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic in the all-time rankings of the Majors.

The Manacor veteran has also become the fourth man in history to have won all Grand Slams at least twice (along with Djokovic, Rod Laver and Roy Emerson). As if that were not enough, the Iberian also won in the prestigious Acapulco tournament.

His streak of unbeaten came to a halt in the Indian Wells final, where he was defeated by host Taylor Fritz (also due to a fractured rib). In a recent interview with the 'Olé' portal, former ATP number 4 Jose Luis Clerc said that Nadal would put an end to the GOAT debate by triumphing again at Roland Garros.

Clerc praises Rafa Nadal

"If Rafael Nadal wins Roland Garros, he will be the greatest of all time. The one who I don't think will win another Grand Slam is Roger. Those of us who love the sport want Federer to be eternal, but he is not.

People tell me 'Batata , Roger is the best,' but for me the one who wins the most Grand Slam titles is going to be the greatest in history," Clerc said. Rafael Nadal has made a dream start to his 2022 campaign.

After opening his season with the Melbourne 250 title, the Spaniard recovered from two sets and a break point down to triumph for the second time at the Australian Open. Rafael Nadal had one of the most remarkable starts to his 2022 season.

Returning to the tour after a long injury layoff, the Spaniard won three back-to-back hardcourt titles including his recording-breaking 21st Major win at the Australian Open. He was on course for his 4th consecutive title win at the Indian Wells Masters, but suffered an injury setback in the final and subsequently succumbed to his first and only loss of the 2022 season.