Rafael Nadal is just two grand slam titles away from matching Roger Federer’s 20, but he is not interested in catching him.
Rafael Nadal insists he will be content if he ends his career with fewer major titles than Roger Federer, stating you cannot be upset if your “neighbour has a bigger house than you”.
After winning the French Open for a 12th time with a stunning 6-3 5-7 6-1 6-1 triumph over Dominic Thiem on Court Philippe-Chatrier on Sunday, Nadal is now just two grand slams short of Federer’s haul of 20 – a record in the men’s game.
The Roland Garros champion has never previously been as close to his rival’s tally of slam titles, having trailed 16-6 when Federer won the 2010 Australian Open.
While Nadal acknowledges the competition between himself, Federer and 15-time major-winner Novak Djokovic has helped push them all to new heights, he will never feel jealous about another’s achievements.
“Of course, we push each other. But I lost, I think, around 15 or even more grand slams in my career due to injuries,” said Nadal.
“But being honest, I never complain myself much, and I never tried to think about, ‘Well, [am] I gonna catch Roger or not?’ Being honest, I am not very worried about this stuff.
“You can’t be frustrated all the time because the neighbour has a bigger house than you, or a bigger TV or better garden. That’s not the way that I see the life.
“I just try to do my way. I feel very lucky about all the things that are happening to me. And if, at the end of my career, I am able to win a couple of more grand slams and be closer to Roger, [it] will be unbelievable.
“If not, for me, still unbelievable, no? And today, the last thing that I thought before you ask me that is about this thing. For me, Roland Garros, feeling myself enjoying again on court – that’s the main thing.
“Then what can happen in the future, we will see. I’m gonna try my best to keep enjoying tennis, giving myself chances to compete at the highest level, and we will see what’s going on.”
— ATP Tour (@ATP_Tour) June 9, 2019