Despite having conquered everything a tennis player could dream of, Rafael Nadal always amazes with his dedication and hunger for victories. 2021 has not been the best season for him so far, as the Spanish legend has failed to lift his 14th title at theRoland Garros.
It is true that two titles have arrived, respectively in Barcelona and Rome, but extraordinary feats are always expected from a champion like him. After the defeat remedied in the semifinals in Paris, the 35-year-old from Manacor announced that he would not take part in either Wimbledon or the Tokyo Olympics, a painful choice but aimed at extending his career.
A few days ago, news came that the 20-time Grand Slam champion will return to the field at the Citi Open in Washington, having accepted the wild card offered to him by the organizers. This will be Nadal’s absolute debut in the tournament, which kicks off on 2 August.
Rafa is an athlete who is admired by many colleagues, including those from other disciplines. Speaking on the OuiHustle YouTube channel, Manchester City star Riyad Mahrez used Nadal as an example to follow for any sportsman.
Nadal will play the American hard-courts season
"There are constant pressures to cope with in sport. We saw it with Mbappé at the last European Championships. He had won the World Cup three years ago and was considered a hero, while now he has been overwhelmed by criticism because of the missed penalty at the European Championships.
They don't care about the past, you always have to prove something. It is not enough to win, the following year you have to make sure to triumph again. Those with this kind of mentality are hugely successful. Look at Rafael Nadal: it doesn't matter that he has already won 13 Roland Garros, every year he keeps trying again despite all the difficulties.
He is a true champion. The moment you stop winning, people will start saying you're done. An athlete is always asked to go beyond their limits," analyzed the Manchester City player.