Hardly anyone expected such a start to the season from Rafael Nadal. The Spanish phenomenon proved once again to be a legend of modern sport, surprisingly winning the Australian Open and reaching 21 Majors. After surviving two real battles against Denis Shapovalov and Matteo Berrettini, the former world number 1 came back two sets behind Daniil Medvedev in the final.
In addition to beating Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic in the all-time rankings, the 35-year-old from Manacor has become the fourth man in history to have won all Grand Slams at least twice. The Iberian suffered a fractured rib during the Indian Wells semi-final against Carlos Alcaraz, a setback that caused him to miss the first tournaments on red.
Despite still being far from the best condition, Rafa has hit the quarterfinals in Madrid and is preparing to face Alcaraz again. Speaking to the Tennis Channel, Pam Shriver analyzed the moment he is going through the Majorcan.
Pam Shriver opens up on Nadal
Pam Shriver also gave her two cents on Rafael Nadal's comeback. "I love also Rafael Nadal says "I manage it very well" - no kidding, no kidding, we've seen him manage it well for 18 years," Pam Shriver said.
"By the way this is the tournament that is like terrible for him in consideration to other claycourt events. He's used to coming back now, the last six months from an injury. I think the fact what he went through when he went into the Australian circuit has given him confidence here in Madrid."
During the post-match interview, the Spaniard opened up about how Real Madrid’s Champions League semi-final victory over Manchester City inspired him. Talking about this, he said, “Well, yeah thanks for that. Yesterday, had been an unforgettable night.
The spirit that the Real Madrid team have is just incredible and for me today, in some way, has been an inspiration by the way I have been fighting all my tennis career”. Further, he added, “Honestly, it has been a very tough match.
David played at such a high level but at the same time, I am not completely happy because I think I had to finish the match in straight sets without a doubt”. In what can be considered the match of the event at the on-going Madrid Open 2022, the epic face off between Rafael Nadal and Carlos Alcaraz in the quarter-finals got off a blistering start with Alcaraz completely dominating Nadal and ran away with the first set, 6-2.