Rafael Nadal created history as he won his 22nd Grand Slam title on Sunday, beating Casper Ruud 6-3, 6-3, 6-0 in the final of the French Open. This was Nadal’s 14th title at the Roland Garros, as he extended his record at the tournament. The Spaniard hardly broke a sweat as he steamrolled the Norwegian youngster en route to his historic title win in Paris. Following the win, Nadal also gave a massive statement on his tennis future.
Nadal had arrived at Roland Garros with persistent fitness doubts after suffering a rib stress fracture and a chronic foot injury. But the Spaniard, who passed fellow countryman Andres Gimeno as the oldest Roland Garros men’s singles champion, again proved that even at less than 100% he is still a mountain too steep to conquer on the red clay of Roland Garros.
And following the win, he gave a massive statement on his tennis future, as he promised the fans to keep fighting his injuries. “I don’t know what can happen in the future. But I’m going to keep fighting, and try to keep going,” said Nadal, drawing massive applause from the crowd.
At the final in January’s Australian Open, Nadal, who turned 36 on Friday, came from two sets down to beat Daniil Medvedev and bag a second title there.
A couple of months earlier he was even considering retiring after a foot problem that has troubled him throughout his career resurfaced, forcing him to miss much of the 2021 season including Wimbledon, the Olympics and the U.S. Open.
“Especially in the very tough moments we went through in terms of injuries, if you don’t have great support from the team nothing of this would happen because I would have retired much before,” Nadal had added in his speech.