"I would like to enjoy Rafael Nadal much more... I hope it's not his last" - Paula Badosa on compatriot's potential final French Open campaign

Paula Badosa (L) and Rafael Nadal (R)
Paula Badosa (L) and Rafael Nadal (R)

Former World No. 2 Paula Badosa shared her thoughts on Rafael Nadal's final French Open campaign. She said that the speculations concerning her compatriot's retirement make her sad and that she expects him to play further.

Nadal hinted that 2024 will likely be his final season. His emotional send-off after a fourth-round defeat at the Madrid Open added to this certainty. The Spaniard spent much of last year recovering from a hip injury, and a muscle tear at the Brisbane International further hindered his comeback.

Regarding Nadal's retirement, his compatriot Paula Badosa recently expressed her views in a press conference, vividly recalling Nadal's first tournament victory in 2005. She considered him a role model, citing he has been a significant inspiration to her.

"In my case, I remember perfectly the first time he won this tournament. It has always been the mirror where I have looked at myself at the level of values, at the mental level, at the level of fight on a tennis court. As a Spaniard, but also for all of us who have come out of the next generation, it has been an inspiration," Badosa said (via Punto De Break).

While saddened by the prospect of his retirement, Badosa hopes to see more of him in action. The 26-year-old wished Nadal the best, hoping he enjoys his final matches.

"Personally, it makes me sad, I would like to enjoy Rafa much more, but time passes very quickly and that is what it is. I hope it is not his last and, if it is, I hope he enjoys it as he deserves, and that he wins as many games as possible. You never know with Rafa, he can do very well here and no one would be surprised," Badosa said.

Nadal has racked up 112 wins in 115 matches at the Rolland Garros and will look to add the 15th French Open trophy to his cabinet this season.

Rafael Nadal not sure if 2024 will mark his last French Open appearance

Rafael Nadal
Rafael Nadal

Rafael Nadal said in a pre-tournament 2024 French Open press conference that this could probably be his last appearance at Roland Garros. However, he wasn't definitive and explained that he couldn't be certain about his prospects.

"It's a big chance that it is going to be my last Roland Garros. But if I have to tell you it's 100% my last Roland Garros, sorry, but I will not because I cannot predict what's going on."

The 37-year-old is set to face World No. 4 Alexander Zverev in the first round on Monday (May 27). He enters the tournament with a 5-3 record on clay this season. The winner of this match could meet either David Goffin or Giovanni Mpetshi Perricard in the next round.

What is the foot injury that has troubled Rafael Nadal over the years? Check here

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