Rafael Nadal: 'Facing Federer has been big challenge all around the world'

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Rafael Nadal: 'Facing Federer has been big challenge all around the world'

In a press conference at the Australian Open Rafael Nadal recalled his 2017 Australian Open five-set loss to Roger Federer. The Spaniard was leading 3-1 in the fifth set, then lost five of the remaining six games. "2017 was a special situation", Nadal recognized.

"Both of us came back from a very long time without playing tennis. Nobody expected that and happened. Was something, like, completely unexpected, and happened. That was big. But today is a different story. We are back to the top positions, fighting for the things again.

Always have been a big challenge to face Roger all around the world, in the different surfaces, different scenarios. And yes, 2017 here it has been one of the matches that going to stays in our minds, in our careers. But one more, we had plenty."

Commenting furthermore on Bernardes, Nadal added: "He umpired me plenty of times after that. I am not people that going to think about what happened in the past. I see him at the airport travelling all around. I always say hello.

We always had a good relationship with Carlos. Being honest, I respect him a lot. I think he's one of the best umpires that we had for a long time. But that day was a mistake. He had time to think about it, that's all. He did something that in my personal opinion was not respecting me, but that's all.

We spoke. We don't have problems at all. If he's on the chair tomorrow, after tomorrow, I will not think at all about what happened in the past. No, no, no problems at all." ALSO READ: Djokovic would beat Roger Federer in Australian Open final - Evert