Rafael Nadal is a physical beast, Novak Djokovic is slimmer, but he can compete for 5-6 hours if he needs to: Casper Ruud

Casper Ruud hails Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic's physical abilities
Casper Ruud hails Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic's physical abilities
Aayush Majumdar

A big factor in Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic's dominance over the years has been their supremely high levels of fitness. Even at 35 and 34 years of age, respectively, the two greats are capable of competing physically against much younger opponents.

One of those younger competitors, Casper Ruud, recently weighed in on Nadal and Djokovic's physical gifts. Speaking to Eurosport, Ruud termed the Spaniard a "beast" when it came to the physical side of the game. With regards to Djokovic, he highlighted the Serb's endurance and ability to stay fresh for long periods during a match.

"There are some players who will always impress you more than others. Rafa, of course, is a physical beast. Novak in his own way, he's slimmer maybe than what Rafa is, but he's there for 5-6 hours if he needs to," Ruud expressed.

The Norwegian also hailed World No. 2 Daniil Medvedev's physical capabilities. Ruud provided the example of the Australian Open final between Medvedev and Nadal to drive home his point. In the match in question, Medvedev went toe-to-toe with Nadal for five-and-a-half hours, before falling short in the fifth set.

"He (Medvedev) doesn't look like the strongest guy but he played up to 6 hours with Rafa at the Australian Open and I don't think the level dropped towards the end. So it just shows that all of the guys are strong," Ruud continued.

The World No. 8 feels that many players at the top level are putting in a lot of effort to improve their fitness and physicality, to keep up with the demands of the sport.

"We all know that you need to be in shape to be performing at this level. All the guys in the top-100, top-500 are great athletes in my eyes. They work hard every day. I see a lot of players in the gym doing exercises all the time, before and after practices," he said.
THIS. From THERE 🀯@DjokerNole #IBI22

During the conversation with Eurosport, the 23-year-old also shed light on his own fitness regime, which includes a lot of physical training and exercise before and after tennis sessions.

Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic will resume their battle for Grand Slam supremacy at the French Open

2021 French Open - Day Thirteen
2021 French Open - Day Thirteen

Despite the emergence of many younger players over the last few years, Nadal and Djokovic have continued to dominate the biggest tournaments on tour. As Ruud highlighted, their ability to stay fit over many hours at a stretch, even as they approach the twilight of their careers, sets them apart.

At the upcoming French Open, both players will resume their battle for Grand Slam supremacy. Nadal took the lead in the Slam race by winning the Australian Open, which is Djokovic's most successful Major. The Serb will now try to draw level at the French Open, which is the Spaniard's favorite Slam.

🀝 Superpowers 🀝@DjokerNole ⚑️🎾⚑️ @RafaelNadal #tennis | #IBI22 | #Djokovic | #Nadal

Djokovic defeated Nadal in an epic semifinal last year.

Also Check Out: Nadal French Open Titles

Edited by Arvind Sriram


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