World No.2 of men’s tennis, Rafael Nadal finishes second in the ‘World Male Athlete of the Year’ Award in the traditional year-end poll carried out annually by a French newspaper, L’Equipe.
The Spanish tennis legend claimed the No.1 spot last year, however, it is seven-time Formula-1 champion, Lewis Hamilton who made it as the ‘Athlete of the Year’ this time.
Hamilton capped his win with a mammoth 1866 votes whereas Nadal finished second with 437 votes, ahead of basketball champ, LeBron James.
Rafael Nadal in 2020!
The Spaniard Rafael Nadal commenced the 2020 season with the Australian Open, where he was knocked out of the tournament by Austrian Dominic Thiem in his 12th quarter-final of the season-opening Grand Slam. However, Nadal made the most from this year to everyone’s surprise.
The World No.2 closed in on the season inside the ATP Top 2 for a record-breaking 12th time, leaving behind the chasing pack of his peers – Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer.
Moving on, Nadal clenched his historical 13th Roland Garros title which brought him to level with Swiss tennis ace, Roger Federer as the only two winners of 20 Grand Slams in men’s tennis. Before the French Open, the ‘King of Clay’ also won his third Acapulco ATP 500 title.
Nadal’s victory over World No.1 Djokovic at the Roland Garros was his 100th win in the Major and the 999th of his illustrious career.
Nadal chose to skip the US Open due to the pandemic but soon returned at the Rome Masters 1000 as the defending champion but could not make it beyond the last eight in the competition.
Nadal’s run at his 16th French Open saw him lift his 13th crown without dropping a set. In the title clash, Rafa ousted Novak in just 2 hours and 41 minutes.
A month later his French Open triumph, the Spaniard competed at the indoor Paris Rolex Masters, where he unlocked his 1000th match win against countryman Pablo Carreno Busta before losing to German Alexander Zverev in the semi-finals of the hard-court tournament.
Lastly, Nadal ended his campaign with a disappointing exit from the year-end ATP Finals in London against Russian Daniil Medvedev who was once at the receiving end when the Spaniard was serving for the match.
Besides his on-court achievements, Rafa Nadal was also bestowed with Spain’s highest sporting honor. The Spanish powerhouse was also honored by ATP with the ‘Sportsmanship Award’ this year.