'Rafael Nadal just needs practice', says top coach

Rafael Nadal recounted in his Academy address to recent graduates

by Simone Brugnoli
'Rafael Nadal just needs practice', says top coach
© Clive Mason / Staff - Getty Images Sport

Rafael Nadal recounted in his Academy address to recent graduates, part of a conversation he had with his great lifelong rival Roger Federer a few weeks ago. Federer and Nadal met off the court and participated in a joint advertising campaign.

The shoot took place in the Dolomites where Federer and Nadal posed at an altitude of 3,000 meters. The focus of Nadal's speech related to the fact that the Mallorca player and the Swiss tennis player agreed in their reasoning that "the most important thing is how we will be remembered."

Rafael Nadal
Rafael Nadal© Getty Images Sport - Shaun Botterill

Rafael Nadal in his speech noted, "A few months ago I had the opportunity to visit the Dolomites in Italy together with my friend and rival Roger Federer. There in the mountains we had an interesting conversation about a word that I think is very important: legacy.

We both agreed on something that we think is of the utmost importance," said the 22-time Slam champion.

Nadal revealed in his speech that at the heart of the conversation with Federer were some questions such as: "How do we want to be remembered in a few years? What do we want future generations to think of us?".

And, Nadal explained, "we were both very sure of our answers. It's nice that our successes, titles and records are recognized, but, as the years go by, it's likely that someone new will come along and do it better.”

Rafael Nadal wants to be ready for the Olympics

During a recent interview with Tennis Majors, Patrick Mouratoglou opened up on Rafael Nadal: “95% of players would lose a three-set match against this Rafa. Of course he was unlucky with the draw, playing in the first round against Zverev, but if he had played against different guys than Zverev, he would have won.

Rafael Nadal, 2016 Rio Olympics
Rafael Nadal, 2016 Rio Olympics© Julian Finney / Staff - Getty Images Sport

Then, probably, he would have played against Zverev in the quarter-finals or semi-finals, but then it would have been a completely different match, because by then he would have accumulated much more competition and more hours of training. For me, he showed that he can still compete with the best, he just needs practice and some time, which he didn’t have before this Roland Garros.”

Rafael Nadal