Amid a banner season at age 36 in a occupation that has already been stamped as mythical, Rafael Nadal says the important thing to his golden good fortune is not any secret: Hard paintings can pay off.
“Without dedication, nothing is possible, especially at this point in my career,” says Nadal, who added to his main name tally previous this 12 months with wins at each the Australian and French Opens – totaling a report 22 Grand Slams.
“It’s about discipline going into each day on the practice court – and in the gym – and I think I’ve managed it quite well to still be dedicated and professional and still do things professionally,” the Spaniard provides. “Every time the challenge is more [and] I hope that I will be ready for it.”
Nadal is readying once more to fit up for Team Europe, however this time as a part of a never-seen-before lineup with rivals-turned-teammates Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic, and Andy Murray.
Among them, they have got captured 66 main titles, a dynasty that has persevered since Federer’s step forward Grand Slam main singles name at Wimbledon in 2003, elderly 21.
“It’s going to be unique – this has never happened and will probably never happen again,” he says. “It’s a special week in a special atmosphere. How can we work together as a team? We need to play in a way that’s going to earn us a win.”
Nadal, by no means one to brag, explains that whilst historical past could also be on Team Europe’s facet, the problem around the web will likely be fervent from Team World’s more youthful lineup.
“We have been part of our sport’s history for the last 20 years, without a doubt,” Nadal says of himself, Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray. “It’s true that we are older, too. The numbers that Team Europe have are amazing, but we still need to compete and play. On the other side of the net are great players who are trying to win their first Laver Cup.”
The venue is acquainted to Team Europe, with the ATP Finals being held in London’s O2 Arena for the previous decade. Nadal is a two-time finalist in that match; Federer, Djokovic and Murray have all captured the crown.
“The O2 has seen a lot of tennis the last 10 years. It’s an incredible place,” says Nadal. “I think the atmosphere will be amazing. We expect a huge atmosphere and to have good fun.”
How it’s going
Nadal began the season profitable 21 consecutive fits, together with an surprising 21st main crown on the AO whilst additionally profitable titles in Melbourne and Acapulco. His good fortune used to be the entire extra astonishing given Nadal have been struggling with a protracted foot drawback a couple of months previous.
While he didn’t win a clay court docket match within the lead-up to Roland-Garros, Nadal used to be undeterred in claiming an astounding 14th French Open earlier than creating a run to the Wimbledon semifinal, simplest undone by way of a torn belly muscle.
Team World’s Frances Tiafoe used an impressed effort to overcome Nadal at the USA Open in 4 units within the fourth spherical, leaving Nadal with a 38-5 report general for the season main into Laver Cup 2022.
On enjoying Laver Cup
While Nadal is legendary for his full-throated effort on each and every level, the excursion veteran is aware of the original Laver Cup setting, specifically with the likes of Federer, Djokovic, Murray, Stefanos Tsitsipas and Casper Ruud cheering him on.
“I always enjoy playing team competitions, without a doubt,” he displays. “I haven’t been able to play on a team as much as I would like. It’s so special. When you share a victory, a loss, happy moments, low moments – things are better. Better than when you are by yourself.”
He says of his facet: “We are excited to play together. We are looking forward to spending a week together in a positive team spirit.”
But why has Team Europe been such a success? And what makes the Laver Cup structure so other from different occasions within the recreation?
“The secret is that we’ve played better,” he says. “Though, a couple of [years] have been very, very close. The way the Laver Cup is scoring is very dangerous. Even if you start well and you think you’re in control, the last day anything can happen. When you start not well and seems you’re in tough position, on the last day, if you can win those matches, you can still take it. That makes the competition very special, very emotional. Even if you’re in the advantage, you know that every match is going to be a battle and that anything can happen.”