Rafa Nadal reacts to winning French Open at Roland-Garros
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Rafael Nadal has been urged not to retire by Express Sport readers following comments that he may not be able to make it to the end of the current season prior to his French Open victory. Over 2,700 readers begged the Spaniard to continue his career after his heroics over Casper Ruud at Roland Garros.
Nadal beat the Dane in three straight sets to claim his 14th French Open and his 22nd Grand Slam to confirm his status as men’s tennis’ most successful player. Rumours emerged before the tournament that the Mallorca-born talent was set to retire in the not-too-distant future thanks to injury woes, but he overrode those to announce his name as the ‘King of Clay’ once again.
Readers were asked on a poll whether they thought the star should call it a day before too long as reports started to pick up that the eventuality might become reality. But an overwhelming 75 per cent of readers backed him to continue in order to pick up as many Grand Slam titles as possible before hanging up his racket.
2,714 readers believe that Nadal should not retire at the end of the season as they continue to marvel at his achievements. Having gone two major titles ahead of Novak Djokovic, the star could end the season with a Calendar Slam if he takes the Wimbledon and US Open titles.
However, 922 readers believe that those titles should spell the end of his career by not continuing at elite level tennis come the turn of the year. Nadal gave his thoughts on retirement after clinching the title on Sunday.
“I don’t know what can happen in the future but I’m gonna keep fighting to try to keep going,” Nadal said after his French Open triumph over Ruud. “Well for me personally, [it is] very difficult to describe the feeling that I have. It’s something that I’ve for sure never believed, [to] be here at 36, being competitive again, playing in the most important court of my career one more time [in a] final.
“Means a lot to me, means everything, means a lot of energy to try to keep going. I just want to say merci, merci beaucoup. Team, family, everyone who is there. It’s completely amazing the things that are happening this year, so I just can thank you very much for all the things that you are doing with me and you did over the years.
“Without you nothing of this would be possible without any doubt, especially in the very tough moments that we went through in terms of injuries.”
The Spanish star will look to win his third Grand Slam this year if he can recover in time for Wimbledon. And with the prestigious competition starting in two weeks, there is nobody in better form than Nadal.
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