Nicolas Almagro: 'Rafael Nadal is as closer as ever to Roger Federer'

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Nicolas Almagro: 'Rafael Nadal is as closer as ever to Roger Federer'

What Nicolas Almagro said in the 2008 French Open during a match against Rafael Nadal will stay in history. "This guy will win this tournament even at 65 years of age" In an interview to Marca, reflecting on this quote 11 years after, Almagro said: "What I said was referred to the team joking.

I could not hurt him. I will always be able to say that I had the luck to play on the Central Court in the French Open against the best clay-courter and a legend." On what could have happened if Nadal was not on Almagro's path in the second calendar Grand Slam, the 33-year-old Murcia native added: "What I could have been and I didn't, do not interest me.

I think Nadal will be able to win as long as he keeps the excitement and stays injury-free. He will always be the favourite to win this event until he retires. He can last two or five more years." On the chance to see Nadal possibly breaking the Roger Federer's 20 Grand Slam titles record, Almagro concluded: "He is as closer as ever and he can catch Roger, without a doubt.

He has time left because he will keep winning the French Open." Meanwhile, Spain's Fed Cup team captain Anabel Medina Garrigues praised Nadal: "Not this year and not even the year after it can be his last Grand Slam because he showed he is doing very well tennis-wise.

He won Paris losing only two sets and he needs to be injury-free. He suffered over those last months, but he is doing well, he reached five Wimbledon finals, he won twice, why not dreaming to do it again."