Rafael Nadal in quotes

Rafael Nadal talks at his press conference
Rafael Nadal talks at his press conference

Tennis legend Rafael Nadal on Thursday withdrew from the French Open and revealed that 2024 is likely to be his final season after a career that has yielded 22 Grand Slam titles including a record 14 French Open crowns.

AFP Sport picks 10 of the best quotes by the 36-year-old Spaniard:

"I have no sense of humour about losing."

-- Nadal in his 2012 biography 'Rafa - My Story'

"It's true that with Novak I played more matches than with Roger, but I started it with him (Federer). Someone I have admired, whom I have rivalled and also with whom I have shared many beautiful things on and off the court. A part of my life left with him."

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-- Nadal in November 2022 declaring his rivalry with Roger Federer was a little more special than with Novak Djokovic.

"It's something that does not bother me if Novak (Djokovic) wins 23 (Grand Slams) and I stay at 22. I think my happiness will not change at all, not even 1%."

-- Nadal to CNN in June 2022.

"It's important to have people around you with enough confidence to say if you are not acting in a good way. Normally, when you are at the top, people say everything is fantastic. Probably in that moment it is what you want to hear, but it's best to be reminded how to act properly."


-- Nadal to The Guardian in 2009.

"I love fishing for three reasons: the calm and tranquillity, the beauty of the sea –- and, of course, the satisfaction of catching your dinner. I can forget about everything. No one can call me, because I keep my mobile switched off, so I can relax and not think about tennis."

-- Nadal to the Daily Mail in 2007.

"My parents' divorce made an important change in my life. It affected me. After that, when I can't play Wimbledon, it was tough. For one month I was outside the world."

-- Nadal to The Guardian 2009 on his mother Ana Maria Parera and father Sebastian's divorce.


"To underestimate the value of her role in everything that has come my way, to see her importance as less than Toni's, for example, would be as blind as it would be unjust."

-- Nadal to Essentially Sport in 2022 on the crucial role his mother played in his march to greatness.

"Every year I go to Broadway to see a musical - I like the music. I saw 'Mamma Mia;' I saw 'Les Miserables;' I saw 'Phantom of the Opera' like six, seven times."

-- Nadal gives an insight to outside interests to Elle.com in 2013.

"Being home alone at night makes me a bit nervous. If I'm at home alone, I have to sleep on the sofa -- I can't face going to bed. I'm there with the TV on and all the lights on. I'm not very brave about anything in life. In tennis, yes. In everything else, not very."


-- To Vogue in 2009.

"I'll never have a tattoo -- I just don't like them, and when you're old they can look a disaster. As for piercings, I don't like them on men."

-- Nadal to Life Beyond Sport magazine.