Neither in the best dreams, nor in the most daring script of a movie, we could imagine a more epic finale and above all more in tune with the career of a tennis player who has already been crowned. The best of all time and that, in case of any doubt, he is the most important Spanish athlete in history. Rafa Nadal’s triumph at the Australian Open came after more than five hours of exceptional fighting that will culminate in the annals of tennis and sport in general. For the first time in the tournament, they came back from two sets to enforce the fifth and eventually win, an achievement that is even more important when you consider that, shortly before they traveled to Melbourne, Nadal came to reconsider his future, due to the injuries which prevented him from performing at his best. Also affected by the coronavirus, the Manacor tennis player arrived in Australia without being convinced at all of his performance. They Spiritual power, their ability to suffer, the desire to win and to overcome difficulties They were better than the cons and achieved what no other tennis player has achieved so far. Twenty-one Grand Slams are considering a career that began in 2005 at Roland Garros, at the age of 19, and which extends for the time being to this second Australian Open, which he won by 35. The adjectives are exhausted to define a force of nature that has grown as much through undisputed victories as through its lesson of sacrifice and honor. Thirteen titles in Paris, four in the United States, two at Wimbledon and these two in Melbourne elevate Nadal to the pinnacle of world tennis, at a time when direct confrontation with the other two stars –Federer and Djokovic– reported unforgettable moments and a three-way competition like never before.
It is not that Nadal enters the Olympus of this sport, as he was already in it with all merit, but with the victory this Sunday he stands as the maximum reference, an achievement that is far more important than one considers take that, in this exciting three-way race, every victory has the added value of a certain unrepeatable stage in the world of tennis. “This is one of the most exciting moments of my career,” he declared just after the exciting match, played, with the two tennis players on the limit, on the Rod Laver court. And this is for many reasons. Because he is the first to achieve the incredible figure of 21 major tournaments, because the record comes after a few critical months in his career, and because it takes place despite all the statistics and circumstances against him.
This Australian Open will be remembered as the tournament in which Djokovic was suspended from the country for refusing to respect the organization’s medical criteria, in a display of arrogance of the Serb, but, in the end, it will be hailed as the great victory of an athlete who, beyond the tracks, is the living image of civic behavior and a mirror for new generations. It’s not just about winning, as Nadal has clearly shown, but about doing it in such a way that the sport is seen as a example of victory. Winning is important, and it’s even more important to enter history, but it’s even more decisive to do so out of humility, constant work and the desire to face adversity.