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Rafael Nadal reflects on his career and how he wants to be remembered when he retires



Rafael Nadal play at academy

Rafael Nadal says being happy away from the tennis court will always matter more to him than his achievements on it.


Nadal has had a decorated career with 19 Grand Slam titles, a record 35 Masters 1000 titles, and wins at the Olympic Games and Davis Cup.

He will unquestionably finish his career as the greatest to ever play on clay with a 92 per cent win-loss record and 12 French Open titles.

But the Spaniard has always valued happiness over success and last year he got married to his long-term partner Xisca.

Rafael Nadal and Carlos Moya snap

And in an Instagram Live chat with Andy Murray in April, Nadal hinted at wanting to start a family soon.

But the current hiatus in tennis due to the coronavirus pandemic could allow Nadal to extend his career a little longer if his body holds up.

In an interview with Spanish publication La Voz de Galicia, Nadal was asked how he would like to be remembered in the future and the 33-year-old gave a thoughtful response.

“As someone good people, more than anything,” Nadal replied.

Rafael Nadal play ball

“I want to leave tennis leaving an impression of being a normal person, with close and good people.

“And that the people who have worked with me during all these years on the circuit have a positive memory of me as a human being, not as a tennis player.

“It is one thing to be humble and another to be silly. I will remember it as a tennis player because I have achieved special things.

“But the most important thing for me is personal relationships, far beyond any sports memory one may have.

Rafael Nadal

“The sports career passes but personal relationships last over time and help you be happy.

“There is nothing more important in this life. If you have 30 grand slams, but don’t have friends, you are going to have an unhappy future.

Rafael Nadal

“Better to have zero grand slams and go to work every day anywhere with a discreet monthly salary and have a good relationship and good companies.

“This gives you happiness more than any money you can have or any achievement you can achieve. I have it very very clear.”

Rafael Nadal