The man with the most number of Grand Slam titles, Rafael Nadal is still not satisfied with his Slam tally. Having defeated World No. 2 Daniil Medvedev in the finals of the 2022 Australian Open, Nadal became the first man in history to have won 21 majors and went past his fellow Big-3 members Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic who are now tied on 20 Slams.
It was not an easy road to the title for the Spaniard however. Having injured his foot at the 2021 French Open, the Spaniard could play only 2 matches n the Tour in the remainder of the year. He returned to Tour in the first week of January 2022 having just recovered from Covid but won the Tour title in Melbourne. Despite the win, not many gave the chance to Nadal to claim the Slam where he had won only once, in 2009 and since then finished runner-up on 4 occasions.
Nadal won his first two rounds in straight-sets before he dropped the set for the first time in Round 3. He wrapped up a straight-set win in the 4th round to enter the quarter-finals where he was taken to the 5th set by Denis Shapovalov in a heated match. After the gruelling battle, he won his semi-final bout in 4-sets against Matteo Berrettini and then beat Medvedev to claim the title having been 2-sets down and making a fantastic comeback to win the finals in 5-sets.
“We are not finished. And we are not sure that 21 is enough, in the end, to finish with the greatest number of titles in history. But as I’ve been saying since Sunday evening, this title, the way I won it, will remain unforgettable. And I want to continue my path, continue to play tennis, if they want to let me (smile),” said Nadal speaking with the media as reported by welovetennis.fr.
Rafael Nadal talks of his plans for Clay season
With the next Slam at Nadal’s favourite hunting ground, the 2022 French Open will be another opportunity for the Spaniard to claim his 14th French Open title and 22nd major and extend his lead over Federer and Djokovic further. Nadal has lost only 3 matches at French Open from the 108 he has played there, having won 13 titles from 17 appearances there which included one injury withdrawal as well.
“I want to play other tournaments and I hope I can have a good preparation for the clay court season,” added Nadal as he now leaves Australia to return home before returning to Tour action at the upcoming tournaments.