Rafael Nadal, who reached his 11th final in Paris on Friday, insisted that nobody should assume his feats are routine and each victory is celebrated like first. With a place in the final, Nadal reached his 24th Grand Slam final, equaling Roger Federer’s record for most finals in a single major.
Although, Rafael Nadal insisted that his dominance on the clay court won’t last forever, the crushing victory over Juan Martin del Potro on Friday to reach his 11th final in Paris reflected completely opposite. After a damp first set which saw Del Potro’s powerful groundstrokes and heavy
This victory meant he has now reached his 24th Grand Slam final and equaled Roger Federer’s record for most finals at a single major. If Austrian Dominic Thiem is able to defeat Nadal on Sunday in the French Open final, in what would be his first Grand Slam final, he would join Novak Djokovic and Robin Soderling as the only two players to beat Nadal on his
In spite of such dominating record Nadal, whose all-time claycourt record now stands at 414-36, stated that nobody should assume his feats are routine and each victory is celebrated like the first.
“Today is a day to rejoice. When you’re in a final like Roland Garros, it’s a great happiness. Being in a final here is something I should rejoice about and be happy about,” Nadal said as quoted by Indian Express.
“It may sound easy and logical, but I don’t want it to be. It’s not a routine. I don’t want anyone to think that it’s a routine. It’s a day that I should rejoice about.”
Nadal has dropped only one set so far in reaching the final. Del Potro did give Nadal few reasons to worry in the first set and it looked as if he might be in for a real scrap.
“His serve was so difficult. He was serving big and hitting very strong the first shots. It was very difficult to stop that,” Nadal told reporters.
“In every game that I served, I had problems. When he’s serving, it’s not in my hands. When I’m serving, should be in my hands but I gave too many chances to him to have the break.
“I was lucky or — lucky or I don’t know what to say for them. Then I converted the important one.”
On being asked about his strategy to beat Thiem, who is the only player to defeat Nadal on clay this season, Nadal stated that he would give his answer by playing well.
“True, I understand that everybody here, you have to write things,” he said. “I can say a lot of things, but the easiest answer and the real answer is to play well.”