Anabel Medina: Magical, unique


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This match, this final, this Australian Open is a demonstration of what Rafael Nadal has been throughout his career: he never lowers his head, two sets to love, even having had a set point in the second. He keeps trying until the end and in the end he has the reward of not only winning a Grand Slam, but also becoming the best in history right now.

It is difficult to explain that he has been able to win 21 Grand Slams. Historically it is something that has never been seen before, and not only the fact of winning 21, but that there are three tennis players playing at the same time who have won 20 each. The fact of winning 21 is a real barbarity, within the reach of very few people – only Serena Williams (23) and Margaret Court (24) are ahead – and I think we will never see it again.

This Grand Slam demonstrates all the capacity that Rafael Nadal has mentally, physically, of ambition, of love for what he does. Because to win 21 Grand Slams you have to be at the highest level for a very long time and have unlimited ambition. Nadal has shown it and more in this tournament that he arrived in the circumstances in which he arrived.

Above all the ambition he has. He is a hyper-competitive player. Every time he does something he likes to do it one hundred percent. And if possible win at everything you do. We have seen him many times playing golf or Parcheesi. Everything he does he likes to be the best. And that is transferred to every game he plays. When he enters a tennis court, he fights to give his best version and until the last ball and this makes him competitive at any time. Here he has proven it again. He has been six months without competing, with a very serious foot injury, and even passing the coronavirus a week before traveling to Australia. Get to Australia and get this.

It is very difficult to explain the ability he has to overcome each time. To always reach your best version and to always be on top.

Reaching 24 on Margaret Court are big words, especially since he is already at an advanced age for tennis. But, and although it is true that it seems not, but it is far away, I would not rule anything out, because now Roland Garros is just around the corner. And yet there are many for the age in which it enters at the moment.

What Nadal, Federer and Djokovic have done is something that we will never see again. The fact that they have won 61 Grand Slams means that they have been for 10-15 years winning almost everything. Only Wawrinka (3), Cilic (1), Thiem (1), Medvedev (1), Murray (4), Del Potro (1) could take any. Achieve that regularity and for so long I see it very unlikely that it will be repeated. Circumstances have changed and, with all due respect, the players who arrive are very, very good, but keeping up with Rafa, Novak and Roger during this time is not easy.

It is also difficult for these charismas that the three have to be repeated. Each one has their personality and their way of being that has made them special. There is talk of how men’s tennis will suffer when they are not there, but Federer has not been in this Australian Open due to injury or Djokovic because he could not participate and it has been a great tournament. It is an inevitable, natural relief. And when this happens I feel that there are great players who are spectacular: Medvedev, Tsitsipas, Zverev… They are great players and there is a nice replacement, but achieving what they have done and having the same charisma is complicated.

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