Rafael Nadal provided an insight into his mental state after booking his place in the 2022 French Open final on Friday.
Speaking to the media later, the Mallorcan was quizzed about his psychological state given his recent tryst with injuries and poor results, especially his surprise defeat to Denis Shapovalov at the Italian Open.
The 13-time Roland Garros champion began by mentioning his chronic foot injury, which he's aggravated on numerous occasions since last year's French Open. Nadal explained that while he was not happy with the condition of his foot, it did not cause doubts in his mind regarding his participation in the Parisian Major.
"As I said, I explained everything going through my mind after Rome, and nothing change. At the same time, I was not very positive after that about my foot, but I was positive that I will be able to play here," said Rafael Nadal.
The 36-year-old said he was happy to contest yet another final in Paris.
"And here I am. I played, I fighted, I did all the things possible to give myself at least a chance to be where I am and happy of course to be able to give myself another chance to play on second Sunday here in the final of Roland Garros, no?"
Rafael Nadal booked his spot in the summit clash at the French Open for a record-extending 14th time. His campaign has been especially memorable given he beat top players like Felix Auger-Aliassime and Novak Djokovic, while leading against Alexander Zverev before the match abruptly ended.
The fact that the Spaniard, who celebrated his 36th birthday on Friday, did not enter the tournament as an outright favorite as he usually does, seems to have made his achievements all the more sweet.
"So that means a lot to me," the Spaniard continued. "And even if all the sacrifices and all the things that I need to go through to try to keep playing, really makes sense when you enjoy moments like I'm enjoying in this tournament."
"I keep playing because I like what I do" - Rafael Nadal
Asked if he felt like he still had something left to prove after years of continued success, Rafael Nadal explained that life is about enjoying what you do on a daily basis rather than chasing laurels.
"It's about every day. No, I mean, it's not about things that you need to prove. It's about how much you enjoy doing what you are doing or if you don't enjoy, then is another story, no?" said the Spaniard.
Rafael Nadal, an avid golfer, highlighted the importance of going out and enjoying the sport you play.
"But if you like what you are doing, you keep going," said the Spaniard. "Because, for example, if you like to go and play golf, you keep going to play golf. If I like to play tennis and if I can and I can handle to keep playing, I keep playing because I like what I do. So that's it."