Roger Federer highlighted that he doesn't really know Rafael Nadal that well off the court but easily identified the personality difference between them on the court. Federer, 42, and 37-year-old Nadal had one of the best and most memorable rivalries in all sports.
On the court, Federer appeared to be always relaxed and had the ability to stay calm and composed even in the most stressful moments. On the other side, Nadal has always been bringing lots of energy and passion into his matches and that includes lots of reaction and emotion. "I don’t know Rafa [Nadal] enough off-site, but he’s like a tiger in the cage whenever I see him at the courts and I feel I’m very relaxed on and off-site.
He has incredible intensity, he’s always warming up, he’s always going around and there’s always much stuff to do for him and he’s preparing and you can feel like there’s always a match on his mind.
I don’t know if we’re so opposite you know. But yeah, I guess, to some extent, I’m may be more calm more relaxed whereas he goes, especially through the tennis days in a more intense way when he’s on-site," Federer said on the ATP Tennis Radio Podcast.
Federer and Nadal played against each other 40 times
The Federer and Nadal rivalry featured 40 matches between the two tennis icons. Their first meeting came in 2004 Miami, when Nadal beat Federer. Their last meeting happened at 2019 Wimbledon, when Federer defeated Nadal in four sets.
During those 15 years, Federer and Nadal had many great meetings on the biggest stage, with several of those matches being Grand Slam finals. Last year, Federer retired at the Laver Cup. For his final match, Federer wanted to team up with Nadal for a doubles match and the Spaniard granted him that request.
After Federer and Nadal took on Frances Tiafoe and Jack Sock and the Swiss' career officially came to an end, both the Swiss and the Spaniard became emotional and burst into tears.
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