Denish doubles specialist Frederik Nielsen believes that adding Toni Nadal to his coaching staff could be exactly what rising Canadian star Felix Auger-Aliassime needs. Uncle Toni, who coached record 20-time Grand Slam champion Rafael Nadal for the majority of the Spaniard's career, accepted to join Auger-Aliassime's coaching staff and return to the Tour.
"It could be what he needs. Toni is old school, with hard work and respect for your opponent and the game in front. FAA has always shown that when he was down in Challengers, even when he was much better. Always respectful of opponents,'' Nielsen said, per Mark Nixon.
''I met Auger-Aliassime when he was 16, and he was calmer and more focussed than I was at twice his age! ''Auger-Aliassime is lacking a bit in point-building ability. For a lot of young players it's full speed ahead and hit every ball as hard as they can and it's understandable with their ability.
But that won't cut it in 5-set matches and in big matches. There you need to build.' '
Auger-Aliassime hopes to work with Uncle Toni long-term
“The goal is to keep [the collaboration] going after the clay court, for the whole year,” Auger-Aliassime told reporters, per Tennis Majors.
“After that, maybe even more in the future, we’ll see. I’m happy that he’s with me to start our partnership. “Why Toni Nadal? As a coach, it’s hard to find a better one, with the track record he’s had with his nephew.
It’s a great opportunity to learn from the best, to see what I can do better to get to the next level, to just improve. In the end, that’s what’s important, to continue to become an even better player. That’s what I am trying to do with Toni.
I really like the man before the coach, I like his mentality and his values. It’s a pleasure to have him in my team”.