Top 5 moments of Rafael Nadal’s career

Rafael Nadal Parera born on 3rd June 1986 is a Spanish tennis player. He is currently ranked 6th in the ATP ranking, he has been ranked No. 1 in the ATP rankings for 209 weeks. He has won 20 Grand Slam men singles titles, an all-time record which he shares with Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic. Rafael Nadal is also known as the King of Clay for his amazing record on clay. He has won 13 French Open titles and one time he was unbeaten on clay for 81 consecutive games which is a record surface win streak in the Open Era. He has 4 U.S Open titles, 2 Wimbledon titles, 1 Australian Open title to his name too. He has also won 1 Olympic gold in 2008 in men singles, 1 Olympic gold in 2016 in men doubles, and 5 times Davis Cup representing Spain.

To pick Top 5 moments from his illustrious career is just criminal but here are the top 5 moments

1)  Nadal won his hard-court Grand Slam in 2009. It was brought the very characteristics of Nadal’s play that is his stamina to outwit his opponents. In the semi-finals, he played Fernando Verdasco. Fernando Verdasco was playing at the peak of his career and he tore Nadal apart for the majority of the game, but Nadal hung in there with an array of defensive shots. At the end of the game, Nadal won 3 sets to 2 and the scorecard read 6-7, 6-4, 7-6, 6-7, 6-4 after they spent 5 hours and 14 minutes on court. It was the longest singles match in the history of the Australian Open. Nadal faced Federer in the final. Nadal’s phenomenal athleticism won him his first hardcourt title as he defeated the Swiss legend 7-5, 3-6, 7-6, 3-6, 6-2 in another epic five-set contest.

2) Nadal has always shown no mercy when it comes to clay. He wrapped around his arms over yet another Roland-Garros title for the 13th French Open title when he defeated one of his biggest competitors, Novak Djokovic, in straight sets to equal Roger Federer’s record of 20 Grand Slams. He is the most dominant player at a single Grand Slam in history. He has always been the favorite to win the Roland-Garros due to his extraordinary record there: 105 wins and just three defeats in his French Open career.

3) Nadal had established himself as the clay-court Specialist by the time he arrived at the All-England Club in 2008. He already had won four French Open titles, but he had always succumbed to defeats on other surfaces. He had lost to Federer in the 2006 and 2007 Wimbledon finals, and Roger Federer looked all set to make it 3 out of 3 in three consecutive years. On the other hand, Nadal was on a 23-match winning streak, so it was billed as the most eagerly anticipated match of their rivalry. They played out the longest final in Wimbledon history, and Nadal ultimately won the final set 9-7 in near darkness after 4 hours and 48 minutes on court. It was that game in which Nadal announced himself as an all-time great.

4) Nadal was written off as a washed-up player at the start of 2017. He had not won a Grand Slam since the 2014 French Open triumph and injuries played a major role and looked set to bring his career to a premature end. Yet, Rafa proved everyone wrong that year winning his 10th French Open title. He was defeated in the round of 16 at Wimbledon. He flew to New York with a belief and very few backed him to win the US Open. Nadal rolled back the years and beat Kevin Anderson in the final in straight sets. Nadal returned to the top of the world rankings for the first time in years, and suddenly Federer’s record was within touching distance.

5) Nadal’s won his fourth US Open title at the age of 33. 13 of his 20 Grand Slams have come at Roland-Garros, but he can no longer be simply referred to as a clay-court specialist thanks to his string of triumphs. He only dropped one set en route to the final, where he prevailed in a five-set classic against the much younger Daniil Medvedev, digging deep and displaying his customary determination and it’s-never-over-until-it’s-over attitude to get the job done. He is one of the most decorated players the men’s game has ever seen.

He has shown the world that he possess the qualities to become the first player in the history of the sport to win 21 Grand Slams. Comment down if you think he will win his 14th Roland Garros in 2022.