Former British player Lee Childs recalled when he faced a 17-year-old Rafael Nadal in 2003 Wimbledon. Nadal was not a very good player yet on grass and Childs prevailed in straight sets 6-2, 6-4, 6-3. In an interview with Sports Gazette, Childs described how it felt to face Nadal: “When we were playing the thing I felt immediately was that you just couldn’t really stretch the guy.
I felt that you couldn’t really put him under a lot of pressure to slice the ball; he sliced the ball because he wanted to, rather than you forcing him into that situation. It was also difficult because he moved well and he was very, very strong at hitting out of each corner.
From the back of the court, there really wasn’t any weakness." Childs also added, "Playing against Nadal is like playing against someone with two forehands. He hits from both sides, it’s quite incredible.
The way it helps him is that he’s actually right-handed, so he plays his backhand like a forehand. The shot-making that was in the final against Medvedev was phenomenal. This is again where Nadal, in my mind is the best really; he absolutely loves getting into a dogfight.
He plays his best tennis when it’s deep in the fifth set, whereas other players don’t like being in that situation. Nadal always pulls shots out the bag”.