Rafael Nadal finally clinched his first title on the red at Barcelona last week, incidentally after having canceled match point against Stefanos Tsitsipas in the final. The 20-time Grand Slam champion thus redeemed the misstep in Monte-Carlo, where he was eliminated in the quarterfinals at the hands of a wild Andrey Rublev.
Thanks to the package of world number 1 Novak Djokovic, the 34-year-old Spaniard will be seeded number 1 in the Mutua Madrid Open, the second Masters 1000 of the season, scheduled for May 2 to 9 at Caja Magica. A few days before the start of the tournament, the five-time champion recalled the most exciting moment he has lived in the Iberian capital over the past fifteen years.
The Mallorcan lingered on the famous 2005 final, when he beat former ATP No.3 – and current Roger Federer coach – Ivan Ljubicic in a five-set battle. At the time, the Madrid Open was still played on hard ground. After losing the first two sets, Rafa became the author of an exceptional comeback despite his very young age.
Rafael Nadal on his most special moment in Madrid
“The first was in 2005. It was the final, even if it was not on the ground. It was an unforgettable, very exciting match, where I remember the audience was incredible, “said Rafael Nadal.
Despite the foot injury, Nadal revealed that the emotions he experienced after the 2005 victory were unforgettable. Then 19, Nadal said winning in his home country made winning special. “The game cost me a few months of my athletic career.
I broke my foot but it was worth it. It was worth the emotion I experienced, which made it impossible to forget… It was incredible to be able to win at home like that, in addition to being very young, ”added Nadal. Rafael Nadal’s uncle and former coach Toni Nadal recently spoke to a Spanish sports website about various topics.
Toni spoke about the Barcelona Open final between his nephew Rafael and Stefanos Tsitsipas. “The Barcelona final was not a great game, Rafa and Stefanos didn’t play well although it was very emotional,” said former Rafael Nadal coach and uncle Toni Nadal.
But in the same breath, he claimed that Barcelona’s victory should boost the confidence of the 20-time winner of the Major. “Rafael Nadal made some straightforward mistakes that he doesn’t usually make. But this victory will give him confidence,” said Toni Nadal.