Rafael Nadal Says He’ll Need 4 Years Of Good Health, Results To Pass Federer’s 17 Slams
by Tom Gainey | October 2nd, 2013, 6:24 pm
  • 85 Comments

After his first round win over Santiago Giraldo in Beijing, 13-time Grand Slam champion Rafael Nadal addressed the GOAT question that both Pete Sampras and Andre Agassi raised last week.

“Here we were 27 years old and it’s much more than what I ever dreamed,” Nadal said. “So I’m going to try to keep working hard. If I’m able to do it, I am able to be healthy and to compete well for the next four years, I going to try to create opportunities to keep wining in important tournaments.

“If that happens, I will have the chance to keep being in the top. If I am in the top, I will have a chance to win more tournaments. But to overtake Roger is something that nobody beat in I don’t know how many years of history. So going to be a big coincidence if that happens in a period of ten years.

“The normal thing is that will not happen. But if that happens or that not happens, only thing I am sure is when I am going to leave this tour, I am going to be very happy about what I did. I tried everything in every practice, in every match. I gave everything. When you try your best everyday, that’s all that you can do. I think I did. So that’s why I am gonna be happy.”

In the more immediate future, if Nadal, who’s already in the quarterfinals where he’ll play Fabio Fognini, wins two more matches in China he’ll return to the No. 1 ranking. He’s a perfect 24-0 this year on hardcourts and he’s won his last 28 on that surface.


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85 Comments for Rafael Nadal Says He’ll Need 4 Years Of Good Health, Results To Pass Federer’s 17 Slams

Brando Says:

‘only thing I am sure is when I am going to leave this tour, I am going to be very happy about what I did. I tried everything in every practice, in every match. I gave everything. When you try your best everyday, that’s all that you can do. I think I did. So that’s why I am gonna be happy.’

^^ THIS!!

This just clearly sums up what Rafael Nadal is all about and why this GOAT debate really is not something that truly matters at all to Rafa.

Whether he surpasses Fed is irrelevant to him and the satisfaction he has given to himself and his fans with his career since he and they know: he’s absolutely done his utmost to make the best out of his talent.

Vamos Rafa!


Steve 27 Says:

Not only he is one of the best tennis player of all time, the most important thing is he is already helping peoeple in all the world, with his foundation, like India, in a “nowhere land”
Read:
http://www.indianexpress.com/news/rafael-nadal-in-nowhere-land-opens-foundation-at-anantapur/1175750/


Okiegal Says:

@Brando

I agree with you 100 per cent regarding the GOAT issue and Rafa. I think he is so focused on improving his game. The accolades will come after his career is over.

Rafa isn’t a lowly goat……..He’s a BEAST!!!

Vamos, Rafa……bite one more trophy!!


Skeezer Says:

@brando
Good post and agree with you. Rafa is not all consumed with GOAT talk like his rafafanatic gang. He knows his place, and he knows he may very well wind of the GOAT. But as of now, its still all about the Maestro, and Rafa will take one day at a time. A day may come where he will look back and see he did accomplish a career better than Fed, but he knows its not now. Fed is still, and has been for the past decade, the greatest ever.


James Says:

Great posts by all, especially @skeezer;)

Rafa really seems to be good and humble. I’m glad he has so much respect for his rival, the Swiss maestro, who as of now is the best in the history of tennis.

Rafa may or may not break the Slam records but I feel privileged to have seen and rooted for a great player like him.

And you know what? There’s no shame in being 2nd to Roger Federer.

For Roger too, if Nadal breaks or equals his slam record, no shame in being 2nd to Rafael Nadal.


Perfect fan Says:

@ James:

U nailed it there….man!!

Great post….keep it up.


Tennis for Life Says:

“and has been for the past decade, the greatest ever”
LMAO….great comic relief from skeezer


Michael Says:

Well, if as Rafa says he is bestowed with 4 years of good health, then surpassing Roger might be a mere formality considering the way he is playing at the moment. Only Novak can play spoil sport to his dreams. I just shudder to imagine the amount of Master Series titles he would win where he is already the leader. It can only go up and up considering his invincibility on Clay. And not to mention Rolland Garros, where atleast he should win two more. It then leaves us with the other majors and importantly the World Tour finals, where surprisingly Rafa is yet to win which is surely a glitch in his otherwise glittering career. If Rafa wins that even once then he will vie for the honours of being the most successful player along with Roger. Although Rafa appears modest as he is always in his interactions with the Media, I agree with Grendel when he says that Rafa cleverly camoflauges his desire to overtake Roger and sounds contended with what he achieved, which is just sheer pretence. The truth is that Rafa was inspired by Roger’s success and his childhood dream was to upstage him which he has successfuly done if we measure it in terms of H2H. There was this constant urge for Rafa to better Roger and this has taken him to great heights. He must definitely give some credit to Roger for his success for it was he who acted as an inspiration.


Giles Says:

All I wish for Rafa is to be happy and healthy and the victories will follow.
Vamos Champ!


Hamza Says:

@Michael

If Federer hadn’t been there, I still feel Nadal would’ve been as good as he is right now. He also would’ve been as inspired as he is right now. There would not be a lack of ambition. If Federer is the target now, Sampras would’ve been the target in that Federer-less universe. He would’ve been as dominant on clay and if not for Federer, might’ve won some more Wimbledons. In fact, I would say that Rafa has been forced to make more changes by Djokovic than Federer. He even acknowledged that indirectly in a recent interview where he said that there is one particular way to beat Federer while with Djokovic, it’s more like a chess match. I feel now there are only two players who can make Nadal even a better player than he is right now – Djokovic and Murray.

Nadal is someone whose work ethics were shaped by Toni. In a universe where Federer doesn’t exist, Nadal would still be the beast that he is today. He would still dream big albeit secretly.


Perfect fan Says:

Slowly but steadily….another “whoisGOAT” cyclone is LOOOOOOMing…..

Prediction: Heavy rainfall & thunder with intermittent hailstorms for upcoming 2 days….may calm down with gloomy sky for a day….will again resume with heavy rain & fierce windy conditions. Hopes of a clear sky looks very dull indeed.

# godsmustbecrazy


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Great set of posts by all,Rafa has summed this up too very well,as James says Rafas not exactly a failure if he does not surpass Roger,and Rogers hardly a failure if he does, its taken Nole all his career to date to win the 6 GS he has already won,which is a fantastic achievement dont get me wrong,but it took him another 3 years before winning another after winning the 1st one,so winning GS is never easy,talk of this player surpassing that player is all premature and best saved for the future.


Brando Says:

@Skeezer: Great post and I fully agree. For now without any doubt- hence why I cannot understand the reason for debate on this- Fed is GOAT. Rafa sees it like that and so do most genuine Rafa fans like pretty much all else. Fed’s earned that accolade with a combination of his brilliant game and phenomenal record. They demand respect and deserve it. Hence without a doubt he’s the GOAT. Has been for a long while and likely will be. As far as Rafa is concerned you are right: with him it’s all about making the most of his talent. IF that means by chance he’s done enough that people feel he has matched or maybe surpassed Fed then it’s ONLY because he’s earned such a belief through sheer hard work. If he does not do so then there is no shame since like Rafa put it: he’s happy knowing that he did all he can to make the most of his career. And at the end of the day that’s all that matters really: making the most of your talent.


hawkeye Says:

Rafa is already the GOAT. It’s not for him to say. He is too Humb1e anyways. He lets his racquet do his talking (as did Sampras and GOATs before him).

Besides, PMac, Nole, Sampras, Muzza, Courier and Gilbert have said it all for him. The list of past and current TENNIS greats on the Rafutopia Bandwagon continues to grow.


Vidzy Says:

If a person who once won 65 consecutive grass court matches , 56 hard court matches, 24 consecutive ATP finals, 237 consecutive weeks at No 1, 5 consecutive US opens, 5 consecutive wimbledons, reached finals of every grand slam from 2005 Wimbledon till 2010 australian open besides just one ,won 6 Masters cups, dominated grass, hard courts, carpet and indoors like no other player in history, is not the GOAT then tennis has no GOAT. How can somebody be called a GOAT in the era of federer who has only 100 weeks at world no. 1 , such a poor record indoors, no masters cup , has won 70 percent of his slams only on one surface ? H2H counts ? Davydenko has a better head to head over your Nadal on hard courts so are u telling me Davy is a better player than Rafa ? Santoro has a 7-2 better H2H over Safin . So santoro is a better player than Safin ? Rafa has a better H2H over federer just because Rafa only faced federer on clay courts during federer’s prime..now with the conditions playing slow than ever in all 4 slams, rafa is taking advantage of this. My point is very clear : if Federer is not the GOAT, tennis has no GOAT and there never will be one. Period.


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Vidzy read Skeezer and Brandos posts to each other,actually Rafa is not really fixated on GOATHOOD the way some of his fans are,and some of the fans actually been the oporative word.


hawkeye Says:

Simple. Weak era. Indoor GOAT.

Your point (an opinion) is very clear and I respect how you’ve arrived at your opinion (for the most part). A very strong argument no doubt.

Many well respected TENNIS greats past and present have an alternative opinion that is also well supported.


Skeezer Says:

And here is where the someone tries to start another fire;

“Rafa is already the GOAT.”

Problem is the poster has no matches.

hawkeye, I’ll tell you one more time, Sampras, Agassi never said Rafa IS the current GOAT. Quit posting stuff that isn’t true. Show us all where any of these 2 guys flat out stated Rafa is the GOAT.


hawkeye Says:

I already did last night on the thread linked below but some of my comments are selectively being moderated and not “public” until they fall off the Recent Comments box. Moderator is not a Rafa fan methinks!

http://www.tennis-x.com/xblog/2013-09-27/13754.php#comment-492806

BTW, “Problem is the poster has no matches”

????

I think you BUMPED your head there, mate!


hawkeye Says:

Yes, my posts have just been approved now that they just expired from the recent comments list.

Too funny!!!


hawkeye Says:

Skeezer Says:

Sampras, Agassi never said Rafa IS the current GOAT. Quit posting stuff that isn’t true.

I didn’t say that. Poster has no matches. Quit posting stuff that isn’t true.


Ben Pronin Says:

Can you guys stfu with the GOAT talk. Shut up.


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Off topic after watching Nole v Verdasco earlier,i dont think Nole was at his best,but the 2nd set was some of the best tennis Fernando has played in some time,hitting some brilliant returns,he was a top 10 player a few years ago,and he played like that today,shame he only does that sporadically though,and lacks the consistency.


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Ben that’ll be the day lol.

<


Skeezer Says:

Ben,

When someone posts BS don’t make it so. You absolutely know what I mean. All was fine until;
“Rafa is already the GOAT.” And then the rest. Am tired of the BS also.
You can read. I’m done.


hawkeye Says:

Ben, respectfully, I haven’t started the GOAT debate on any T-X thread. I’ve only responded to those that did.


Tennis for Life Says:

Agassi says:
“Until Nadal, you would say Fed was probably the best of all time.”
Key words… “until Nadal”, “Federer was”


hawkeye Says:

Tennis for Life makes an excellent point. Mustn’t play TENNIS.


hawkeye Says:

Rafa is the only active player (not sure about inactive) to hold single surface type winning streaks of more than 20 matches in a single season on two different surfaces! 24 on HC , 23 on clay.

King of Tennis!


Faleye o kehinde Says:

Just wait and see what would happen within the next four years according to Nadal,let’s just wish he’s in good health. He has been so consistent since the beginning of his career


hawkeye Says:

According to Nadal? Whazza huh?

Consistently winning more slams than any other player since 2007 so you make a good point!!!

Vamos Rafa!!!!


SG1 Says:

Ben,

The GOAT discussion is the single most polarizing (and popular) discussion point for Tennis-X. Look at most of the articles written by the staff at Tennis-X that don’t involve GOAT talk. There aren’t very many posts in those.

However, get people talking about who’s better than who and the attention pours in. If you’re going to make a public forum, you can’t stop people from talking about what they want to talk about, no matter how sick you are of the subject.


hawkeye Says:

SG1, yes he can. Have you read the guidelines? My posts at best are tape delayed.


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

SG 1 there is such a thing as overkill though,sorry just saying.


SG1 Says:

Tennis-X should be happy that there are so many people who want to interact on its site. Isn’t this the point? No ones doing anything illegal or immoral by having an opinion are they? If the GOAT is what they want to talk about, let’em. If there weren’t so many engaged readers, Tennis-X’s staff may not have the opportunity to write about and discuss tennis which is something all of you (and the rest of us) clearly enjoy.


SG1 Says:

TXHC,

If this is what people want to talk about, there’s nothing that can be done about it. It’s like that radio show you don’t like. If you have a problem, just don’t listen.

I’m not saying that GOAT talk 24/7 is particularly great. I’m just saying that the Tennis-X democracy has spoken. Let them eat cake if that’s what they want. No harm done.


SG1 Says:

Interestingly, it’s tennis-x that stokes the GOAT fire by talking about what Agassi and Sampras think in two separate Tennis-X articles. If Tennis-x is serious about getting away from GOAT talk, then walk the walk. Stop generating articles about it.


Hamza Says:

SG1 has a very valid point. Great posts.


hawkeye Says:

I certainly won’t start the GOAT debate but I don’t like to stand by nice and quiet when someone says Rafa know his place and what is implied, no?

This is not the best way in my opinion.

Very good insight SG1.


Slice Tennis Says:

As far as I know fed fans have been very active with the GOAT debate for the past eight years. One guy here states that Federer has been the GOAT for the past decade. A decade back he had one slam against his name.

But why suddenly now some fed fans want this to stop ?

No one can force anyone to join the GOAT debate. If someone is not interested in the GOAT they can choose to ignore it. Is there any problem in doing so ??


Steve 27 Says:

they are “breaking bad”.


courbon Says:

Its not a problem to ignore GOAT debate for a day or two but this is now going for exactly 20 days ( I’m not joking either )…maybe they should change name to GOAT-X blog..


Perfect fan Says:

Was watching the famous fedal match….where in they’re having a fit of laughter while shooting for a promo for an upcoming exo match….a special vid and a real treat for all fed-rafa fans.

I strongly recommend this to all those who are still to watch this amazing vid….go for it, u wud love it….100% smiles guaranteed. Jus type “fed rafa fit of laughter” into google and enjoy the show.

Possibly, it may also wash away some of the hatred from ur heart for these marvellous athletes (if at all there is any)…. :)

“Va-llez fedal” !!


Perfect fan Says:

^sorry the famous fedal video…I meant above^


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Perfect Fan i have just watched that video,and i love it everytime i watch it i howl with laughter,each time Roger says so Rafa,and Rafas eyebrows arch,ha ha priceless and hilarious :))..


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Courbon theres more chance of me making love to Hugh Jackman,than there is of the GOAT topic ever going away sorry.


courbon Says:

You are not fan of Wolverin?????


Perfect fan Says:

and Alison….. the best part of the vid that I like the most is when they speak each other tongues and then roger goes on to say vamos rafa and then I think rafa too says allez roger….

that’s s-p-e-c-i-a-l….simply love these guys !!


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Courbon never seen that film to be honest,as i am not a fan of those type of films,but O.M.G just lurrrve Mr Jackman,Mrs Jackman is one very lucky lady,he was actually voted the sexiest man alive in one pole.


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Perfect Fan lol yeah its a lovely moment,such respect and admiration that they have for one another,shame about the fans(sigh)..


Perfect fan Says:

Shud I believe….that Hugh Jackman is the new GOAT ?? ;)


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Perfect Fan in the words of Austin Powers yeeaah baby ;))..


Perfect fan Says:

:))….. still not finished laughing on the part where rafa archs his left eyebrow, everytime roger says….so rafa!! ha-ha-ha

o god…rly did good to watch that clip b4 I retire to bed now.

I-sign-off!!


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Perfect Fan i know how you feel lol.


courbon Says:

I still tremble when Rafa smiles…ahhhhhhhh


courbon Says:

Ok, I admit-Rafa is a handsome bloke.
I’ll go back to other tread to see how is GOAT debate going on.Its like a boxing match-Hordes of Rafa fans in one corner and Skeezer in other.
Hippy Chic, lets do ‘Jamie’ for a moment-
I’m predicting GOAT debate will go for another 7 days.
What you think?


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Courbon Rafa is a handsome bloke,i cant say id noticed lol,anyway sorry but the GOAT topic is unlikely to ever go away im afraid,seems like we are both giving Jamie a run for his money.


courbon Says:

I’m off to bed.I have to wake up early and get those Armani briefs before work.Night, night…


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Night,night Courbon pleasant dreams ;))..


the DA Says:

Haha….Fognini played like a dream and had a BP to go up 6-2 5-1 and now Rafa has taken the 2nd set 6-4. Fabio is totally going to lose now. Rafa has made some weird errors.


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

The DA you have more confidence in Rafa than i do then,Fabios still playing very well at the start of this 3rd set,im not taking anything for granted.


Steve 27 Says:

Da, is it me or the commentarist is biased against Rafa?


Giles Says:

Vamos Champ! Well done! One more for ONE!!


metan Says:

Finally Rafa got trough.
VAMOS RAFA.


the DA Says:

NID. Rafa takes 10 of 11 games to win. Fabio wilted like overcooked pasta.

@steve 27 – I didn’t get the sense of any bias. I was listening to Jason Goodall & another guy. Thought they were fair.


Steve 27 Says:

What a comeback from Rafa. despite the tremendous level of Fognini in the first set and part of the second, if you do not give the final blow to Rafa Nadal, your moment will have passed. Separates it from only one 1. Berdych or Isner. Never mind. He is the best, far, in 2013. Vamos!


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

OK Have to ask,is it just me or has Tomas Berdych have rather strange looking knees?


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Agree with Steve 27,that was some come back from Rafa,the difficult thing for any player is keeping Rafa down,one of the most tenacious players on the mens tour,thats what i love about the guy,no such thing as a lost cause,also loved watching this match for the eye candy too,two for the price of one lol,would root for Fabio against almost any other player except Rafa and Andy Murray.


hawkeye Says:

Vamos Rafa!!!

Too many service breaks. Even though Rafa’s in his head, Berdy will be a tough out on this faster surface. Best chance for him, no?


ID Fan Says:

Hi Hippy Chic:

Congrats to you and other Rafa fans. Great win.

My boy Djokovic looks good too. What a win for Nole! Idemo Nole!


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Hi ID Fan thanks,Nole does look good your right,Rafa looked down and out against Fabio,but still managed to find a way through,Berdych will be a tougher prospect,so i dont know if he will come through that one,so if the winning streak ends i wont be too dissapointed anyway,same as the number 1 ranking,if he gets it he gets it,if he doesnt he doesnt,same with the title,its not one im overly concerned about TBH.


Patson Says:

I see Nole winning this one. I feel Berdych is finally going to beat Rafa this time. Even if he doesn’t, I like Nole’s chances in the final. Rafa’s hard-court streak ends in Beijing :)

Let the Nole resurrection process begin. Although I did say something similar on these lines during the US open hehehe …


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Patson i agree i think Berdych looked very sharp today,and Rafa not so much,even if he beats Berdych,i think this is Noles tourney to loose now,as Nole has been awesome this week,and i cant see Gasquet beating Nole,however i dont know if this will mean some sort of new coming for Nole,but if he finishes the season strongly,he will be in a good position and confident for the start of the 2014 season,we,ll see though i suppose.


holdserve Says:

I don’t think we can predict the outcome of Rafa-Berdy or Rafa-Nole based on Rafa-Fog match.
Rafa was worried about his knee right from the first point so I was not at all surprised that he played badly. Hopefully he has had time to evaluate his knee and if it “allows him to be competitive” he will beat Berdy.
If he beats Berdy, then depending on how sharp he looks against Berdy we can try predicting the outcome of Rafa-Nole.
If his knee is bad, not only will he not win against Berdy, we cannot expect much from him at Shanghai either.
I am still optimistic about his knee!!! Vamos Rafa!!! Go get that #1!!!!!


Okiegal Says:

I had to watch that point over on you tube 2 or 3 times to pick up on that. Agree with HOLDSERVE he was dismantled from the get go, but he finally got a little more comfortable with the knee and got the job done. I did not see the first set and I could not figure out what was wrong….then it came to light….the skinned up knee. Hopefully the knee will be OK. He is definitely paranoid about the knee and who could blame him.

VAMOS, RAFA!!!!


Patson Says:

So much for my predictions.

Berdman disappointed big time, but then when hasn’t he ?

Retiring after 6 games ? Come on man, atleast you should’ve played a set.


Steve 27 Says:

Rafa is in Berdych’s head!
Rafa will surpass Borg this year in weeks as number 1.


ID Fan Says:

Hippy Chic:

Fair enough. We will have a Rafa tribute on our site this weekend, look out for it.

Looks like a Djokal final. I think Novak will give a dose of Monte Carlo again.

1st there is Gasquet. I like his game too. Is there anyone who doesn’t like Gasquet’s sweet backhand?


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

ID Fan Nole is in the final,like i say out of the two hes looked the best this week,although he was pushed by Verdasco,like Rafa was against Fognini,anyway i think this surface suits Nole better.


Michael Says:

Hamza,

Sorry for the belated response to your post. I agree that Rafa would have shined even without Roger. As you said, he might have even won more if not for Roger who tamed him at Wimbledon in 2006 and 2007. My perception was that Roger was an inspiration to generational players like Rafa and so it is, I believe. He made players like Rafa more focussed, eager and ambitious. It is another matter that even without Roger, Rafa would have been a brilliant player, for which he is widely known.


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Michael lovely post,they all bring out the best in one another,Roger,Rafa,Nole,Andy,and that is what we should enjoy,rather than arguing about whos records are greater than whos,enjoy them all while they are here,as they sure as hell wont be around forever.


hawkeye Says:

Agree with you TXHC (even IF Rafa is the GOAT).

Expect Nole to make the h2h a little closer tomorrow under the circumstances.

Still amazed that Rafa got back to No. 1 in less than eight months with nothing from Wimby. In-farging-credible!!!

Vamos!!!!!

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