"I don't think there are many players who are capable of doing everything that Rafael Nadal has shown us over the years" - Stefanos Tsitsipas 

Stefanos Tsitsipas praises Rafael Nadal
Stefanos Tsitsipas praises Rafael Nadal

Rafael Nadal's hometown of Mallorca is hosting an ATP 250 event on grass in the lead-up to Wimbledon. And one of the players in action at the Mallorca Open is Stefanos Tsitsipas, who on Tuesday waxed lyrical about Rafael Nadal winning the French Open earlier this month.

In an interview, Tsitsipas spoke about the values that Nadal has stood for throughout his career and praised him for setting the example for younger players in the game.

"I don't think there are many players who are capable of doing everything that Rafa has shown us over the years," Tsitsipas said. "He has proven to be disciplined, hard-working, and consistent. He has always continued to train to improve and learn. He does not make excuses when things do not go well."

Tsitsipas particularly highlighted how the Spaniard has not complained about the long-standing foot injury that he's been dealing with. The World No. 6 also talked about the enormity of Nadal's feat of winning his 22nd Grand Slam and 14th French Open title.

"And despite everything that has happened to his foot, even in his worst moments, he always knows how to get up, and is an example for everyone," Tsitsipas said. "Nadal does things that seem impossible. And I talk about things like winning this Roland Garros, and doing it up to 14 times; or conquer 22 Grand Slams. It dominates all terrains."

Rafael Nadal is more than an athlete and a tennis player: Stefanos Tsitsipas

Tsitsipas and Nadal at the Barcelona Open Banc Sabadell 2021
Tsitsipas and Nadal at the Barcelona Open Banc Sabadell 2021

Stefanos Tsitsipas showered more praise on Rafael Nadal and asserted that the Spaniard's influence goes beyond tennis. Tsitsipas believes Nadal is an "icon of the sport" who should be a reference to others.

"Rafa Nadal is more than an athlete or a tennis player," Tsitsipas said. "He is an icon of the sport."

While the Greek is in the middle of competing at the Mallorca Open, Nadal happens to be the most famous export from Mallorca. Having grown up on the Spanish islands, this is the place where Nadal found his love for the sport of tennis.

Tsitsipas also spoke about how Nadal is the best brand ambassador for Mallorca:

"Of tennis in this case, but also of Mallorca, of its Island, and Spain. He is a global ambassador of the sport and the best ambassador of Mallorca. He is a person known throughout the planet."

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

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Edited by Nicolaas Ackermann
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