1996 Wimbledon champion Richard Krajicek says the mental atttitude is the most important thing in the game and adds that's the main reason behind Rafael Nadal's success. In an interview with Tennis Majors, Krajicek discussed Tim van Rijthoven's stunning 's-Hertogenbosch victory.
Van Rijthoven, who upset top-ranked Daniil Medvedev in the 's-Hertogenbosch final, clinched his first ATP win and his maiden ATP title in the same week. Krajicek, a Dutch tennis legend, said he felt van Rijthoven wasn't mentally the strongest player in the past.
Now, Krajicek feels van Rijthovn is mentally much stronger and that is showing in his results. Reflecting on the importance of the mental attitude, Krajicek said Nadal would not have been this successful if not for his extraordinary mental strength.
Krajicek: Nadal a great champion because of his mentality
"It’s the most important thing. I mean, if you look at Rafa, he’s a very good player, a great player, but without the mentality he would not have achieved half of what he has achieved.
Same with Novak. It’s the most important thing – and the willingness to work hard, but I have to say Tim always had that, he’s a very hard worker. But how do you cope on the court with a few setbacks? There’s never a match where everything goes the way you want it to go, where you win every point.
There’s always ups and downs, and how do you deal with it? You have to try to be the best version of yourself. So I think that’s what you always try to tell a player, like look at the mentally tough players, understand that sometimes they have from within naturally this ability also, but try to be the toughest strongest player that you can be," Krajicek told Tennis Majors.
Meanwhile, Nadal is preparing to compete at Wimbledon, where he will be aiming to win a record 23rd Grand Slam title.