Rafael Nadal has just finished his tour of South America, where he has defeated Casper Ruud in four of the five exhibitions played. The year 2022 gave the Spanish star two Slams, the Australian Open and Roland Garros, but no Masters 1000.
The former world number 1 thus reached 22 Majors, extending his lead over Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer in the all-time ranking. The Serb then closed the gap by winning Wimbledon for the fourth consecutive time, the seventh in history.
Rafa also played some great tennis on the grass at Church Road, but an abdominal strain forced him to withdraw on the eve of the semi-final against Nick Kyrgios. That injury also affected his preparation for the US Open, where he failed to reach the round of 16 (beaten in four sets by host Frances Tiafoe).
The end of the season was quite disappointing for the Spaniard, who left prematurely both in Paris-Bercy and in the ATP Finals in Turin. In a lengthy interview with 'We Love Tennis Magazine', Jack Draper revealed that he is a big fan of Rafael Nadal: "Being a lefty myself, I've always loved watching Rafa Nadal's matches.
I watched closely the way Rafa used his serve and his forehand to get the best of his opponents." Draper added: "Being British, I have to admit I also grew up admiring and supporting Andy Murray. Seeing a British player compete at the highest level and win important titles has inspired me to work hard to achieve my goals." Carlos Moyá recently analyzed Rafa's season: "As long as his body lasts, he will continue to train hard and challenge himself.
2022 was an extraordinary year, although it got worse after Wimbledon. He had to deal with two serious injuries and was unable to perform at his best in the last tournaments of the season. He hasn't had any luck."
Rafa Nadal on the GOAT debate
From Mexico where he ended his tour of friendly matches on the American continent with a victory over Casper Ruud, Rafael Nadal gave his opinion on the famous debate of the GOAT, in which he is often opposed to his great rivals, Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic.
"For me, personally, it's something that doesn't keep me awake because I think the three of us have surpassed anything we could have ever imagined achieving. With our results, we have taken the sport to a higher level and the debate over the identity of the champion is more a question of the media,” said the man with 22 Grand Slam titles in remarks reported by Eurosport Spain.
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