Shortly after telling the men’s tennis world that being No. 1 wasn’t the be all, end all of 2013 for him, Rafael went ahead and locked up the top rank anyway.
“I’ve already finished the year as the world No. 1,” Rafael Nadal said. “If it happens again, it will be perfect, but the story of my season is not the No. 1 spot. The story is that I was able to come back, to win and to be competitive again in a short spell of time.”
Nadal was atop the Association of Tennis Professionals rankings heading into the Finals this week in London. Rafael needed only two wins in the round-robin tournament to seal the deal and he did so in his first two match ups, Tuesday beating fellow Spaniard David Ferrer 6-3, 6-2 and Wednesday squeaking by Stanislas Wawrinka 7-6(5), 7-6(6). It is the third time in six years that Rafael Nadal has finished in the top spot in men’s tennis.
“During all this season I said finishing top of the rankings was not my goal, but the truth is after all the success I had during the season, I think that after all what happened last year, I felt I deserved to be there at the end of the season. And today I did it,” Nadal said.
“It is one of the best things that I did in my career: come back to No. 1 after three seasons. That’s very difficult in our sport, and after a very important injury,” Nadal said via the Boston Herald.
Wawrinka, his final obstacle to locking down the No. 1 spot, wasn’t too pleased with the continuous coaching Rafael received from coach and uncle Antonio Nadal.
“That’s normal,” the Swiss pro said. “That’s part of the game. But when it’s too much, it’s too much.”
Wawrinka then indicated the only reason Rafael Nadal wasn’t given a second warning was simply because it was Rafael Nadal. Rafael was warned by the chair umpire for taking too long in between points as he looked to find a way to stave off the strong-striking Swiss star.
What do you think of Rafael Nadal’s resurgence? What does Nadal have left to prove?