Former two-time US Open champion Tracy Austin thinks Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal crying together at the Laver Cup was the moment of the 2022 season. After Federer teamed up with Nadal in the final match of his career, they both broke down in tears during the Swiss' retirement speech.
When it comes to the story of the 2022 season, Austin said it was Ashleigh Barty winning the Australian Open and then retiring two months later while ranked at No 1 in the world. Also, Austin said Nadal impressively recovering from a two-set deficit in the Australian Open final was the match of the year.
"Moment-Roger-Rafa crying together at the Laver Cup. Story-Ash Barty winning the Australian Open, receiving the trophy from Evonne Goolagong, retiring at #1! Match-Rafa winning the Australian Open final-looking down and out with #21-history on the line.
Honorable mention: Alcaraz-Sinner-best tennis," Austin tweeted.
Moment-Roger-Rafa crying together at @LaverCup ð¥². Story-Ash Barty winning AO, receiving trophy from Evonne, retiring at #1! Match-Rafa winning AO final-looking down and out with #21-history on the lineðHonMention:Alcaraz-Sinner-best tennis https://t.co/qONyvEFvxB — Tracy Austin (@thetracyaustin) November 29, 2022
Nadal on Federer: I said goodbye to an important part of my career
Nadal and Federer created one of the greatest rivalries in tennis history and had many great battles over the years.
After Federer played the final match of his career, Nadal broke down in tears and that moment showed how important the Swiss was in the Spaniard's career. “There are many experiences together, important moments shared in our lives as rivals and team-mates.
People have feelings and understand this sport for what it is, a sport. When you have a rival like Federer, throughout your career – because when I started Roger was already there, it’s true I played more matches with Novak than with Roger, but I started it with him [Federer].
Due to our contrasting styles and personalities, due to affinity, in some way we have shared so much. Someone I have admired, who I have rivalled and also I have shared many beautiful things on and off the court was leaving.
In that sense, all those moments, those feelings you have before playing a final of a Grand Slam, of an important tournament, everything that was in the air before those matches. It was different from other matches. You know you’re not going to live that again and a part of my life left with him [when he retired].
It was also the emotion of saying goodbye to someone who has been so important to our sport," Nadal said.