RAFAEL Nadal has admitted that his rival Novak Djokovic is the greatest of all time (GOAT) in men’s tennis.
Although Djokovic has won more Grand Slam titles (24) than Nadal (22) and Roger Federer (20), there are still tennis fans who claim the latter two have greater legacies than the Serbian.
“I believe that numbers are numbers and statistics are statistics. In that sense, I think he (Djokovic) has better numbers than mine and that is indisputable,” Nadal said in an interview with Spanish outlet AS published today.
“This is the truth. The rest are tastes, inspiration, sensations that one or the other may transmit to you, that you may like one or the other more.
“I think that with respect to titles, Djokovic is the best in history and there is nothing to discuss about that.”
Nadal, whose last Grand Slam title came in 2022 at the French Open, has struggled with injury issues in recent years, also missing out on the US Open in 2021 with a foot problem.
The Spaniard, however, insists his injuries are not an excuse.
“As always, everyone can see the story as they wish, saying that I suffered many injuries. Bad luck for me or bad luck that I had my body this way,” the Spanish great said.
“He has had another one and in some ways that is also part of the sport. I congratulate him for everything he is achieving and it doesn’t cause me any kind of frustration.”
Despite losing his record of Grand Slam titles to current US Open champion and world No.1 Djokovic, 37-year-old Nadal is happy with his achievement in his chosen sport.
“I said it when I was the one with the most Slams, I said it when we were tied and I say it now that I am behind. I am not going to be the one who tries, through a personal struggle, to want to be what I am not,” he said.
“What is, is, and what is not, is not. I say this, I am very satisfied with everything that I have done.”