Nadal: 'You don't know about tennis if you don't admire Roger Federer'

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Nadal: 'You don't know about tennis if you don't admire Roger Federer'

Rafael Nadal and his team recalled Spanish player's win over Roger Federer in the 2008 Wimbledon final. Nadal's physiotherapist Rafael Maymo said: "Rafa had lost twice to Federer in the past years, he had had a chance to win and it vanished in front of him."

Nadal's uncle and former coach Toni recalled when the match was suspended due to rain on 2-2 fifth set: "I went to the locker room, because I thought I was going to find Rafael with very low hopes. I thought, What can I tell Rafael to raise his spirits?" Rafael added: "I don't know what Toni meant to tell me at the moment, but I was prepared to take on the challenge and deal with adversity at every moment.

And that's what I told Toni, that I would not fail. Federer could win, but I was not going to lose. If he wins, so be it, but I won't lose. When I was serving to win Wimbledon, I thought, I am gonna win Wimbledon. Compared to the way things were going for years, history was now being rewritten.

"I do admire Federer's style, and those who don't either they do not know about tennis," continued Nadal. "Even if you are someone else's fan, you need to be able to recognize excellence and Federer is excellent in every sense."

For Nadal, fair play is the key: "One can win or lose, that's part of our lives. We need how to know how to live with both, defeat and victory."