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Rafael Nadal claims he was "lucky" to have had certain people by his side, pays special tribute to uncle Toni and his parents

Rafael Nadal embraces his family after winning the 2020 French Open
Rafael Nadal embraces his family after winning the 2020 French Open
Modified 06 Apr 2021

Rafael Nadal recently spoke at length about the people he considers to be the most instrumental figures during his playing career. The 20-time Major champion described the role played by his uncle and former coach Toni Nadal, as well as that of his parents, current coach Carlos Moya, Carlos Costa (manager) and Francisco Roig (assistant coach).

During a conversation with one of his sponsors, Rafael Nadal paid tribute to all the key members of his team. The 13-time French Open champion claimed that he wouldn’t have scaled such heights without their efforts, and he made special mention of Uncle Toni and his parents, crediting their sacrifices for his glittering career.

"Without all the people who have been by my side none of this (his success) would have been possible," Rafael Nadal said. "That if my uncle had not introduced me to tennis or helped me decisively during practically my entire career, I would not be where I am. That if my father and my mother had not been willing to accompany me to a place every weekend and not doing the things that maybe they had other options to do, maybe they had more fun."

According to Rafael Nadal, he might not have developed his perseverance and fighting spirit without the continuous support that he received.

"If I had not had the people who would have guided me on the right path, then perhaps I would not have had that spirit of perseverance, of overcoming," the Spaniard continued. "I think I have been lucky to have the people by my side who have helped me."

Rafael Nadal speaks about uncle Toni, Carlos Moya, Carlos Costa and Francisco Roig

Rafael Nadal with uncle Toni (R)
Rafael Nadal with uncle Toni (R)

Rafael Nadal also recalled the early days of his career when he attended the Manacor tennis Club, where Uncle Toni was a coach. The 34-year-old revealed that he began to show glimpses of his qualities from the age of eight.

"My uncle was a coach at the Manacor tennis club and I started going when I was three years old," Rafael Nadal said. "I think from the age of 8, 9, maybe 8, it seemed that I had some outstanding qualities and they took things seriously. And the goals that my uncle had with me were ambitious."

Rafael Nadal also claimed that his manager Carlos Costa is someone with whom he can freely communicate and discuss anything, including any problems he faces.

"Carlos is my manager and I started working with him when I was 13 years old," Nadal continued. "Well, he is a person with whom I have the maximum confidence to be able to talk about anything or to be able to explain any problem or doubt that may arise at any time, right?"

The World No. 3 then turned his attention to current coach Carlos Moya. Nadal believes that Moya’s addition to his team has been extremely beneficial, given that the 44-year-old has experienced the tour both on his own and alongside the Mallorcan.

"The fact that in 2017 he (Carlos Moya) hoped to work with me as a coach, I think it was a boost for me," Nadal said. "And I think the fact that, not only has he lived all those experiences, but has also shared them with me as a player, I think that makes him have an adequate perspective of what he thinks can suit me at all times."
Carlos Moya (L) with Rafael Nadal
Carlos Moya (L) with Rafael Nadal

Franciso Roig is also one of Rafael Nadal’s coaches who has been with the Spaniard since 2005. Nadal revealed that Roig is someone who knows how to help him rediscover his form whenever necessary.

"I started with Francis in 2005, practically my entire career from that moment until today," Nadal added. "And I think he is a person who knows how to recover my tennis and he is passionate about working on the court."
Published 06 Apr 2021, 21:55 IST
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