If he wins the Australian Open early next year, Rafael Nadal will have won four straight majors, giving him what's already being dubbed as the "Rafa Slam." Given that he's so close to winning four in a row, you might expect Nadal to have his sights set on winning the real Grand Slam: all four majors in a single season. Rafa insists he's not.
Speaking at a pre-tournament press conference on Tuesday in Shangai, Nadal was asked about whether he could win the Slam:
Q. Maybe for next year, fans ask about the four.
RAFAEL NADAL: The four what?
Q. The four titles next year.
RAFAEL NADAL: I hope to have the chances to win four titles next year, no? I know you are talking about the Grand Slam. For me, that is impossible. But I will try to keep playing well and to try to win four titles next year.
But the Grand Slam is not the case. That's for sure impossible, I think.
No man has won the Grand Slam since Rod Laver in 1969, so Nadal has a reason to doubt his chances. But given that he's on the verge on winning the non-calendar Slam, surely he can't think it's impossible. Me winning the Grand Slam is impossible. Nadal winning the Grand Slam is a longshot. Big difference.
[Photos: See tennis superstar Nadal in action]
Of course, it's not in Nadal's nature to boast about future plans. Even when it was obvious that winning Wimbledon was his major goal, he didn't hype it up beforehand. Similarly, when the goal turned to winning the U.S. Open, Nadal wasn't talking up his chances either.
Rafa doesn't think winning the Grand Slam is impossible. He knows he has a shot -- however slim -- and that's exactly why he doesn't want to talk about it.
[Related: Nadal among the top earning tennis stars]
Other popular stories on Yahoo! Sports:
• NFL agent confesses to paying off college players
• Teammates throw a different kind of celebration for Rangers star
• NBA team plagued by desperate sneaker shortage