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Nadal not worried about catching 'neighbour with bigger TV' Federer in Grand Slam stakes

Nadal now sits just two major trophies off his rival’s record.

Nadal and Federer embrace in France.
Nadal and Federer embrace in France.
Image: Cynthia Lum

RAFAEL NADAL WON the 18th Grand Slam title of his tennis career Sunday, putting him just two trophies away from Roger Federer’s haul of 20 majors.

Nadal versus Federer is one of the sport’s greatest rivalries of all time.

One is the king of clay while the other is the grass master. Nadal has the superior head-to-head record with 24 wins against 15 losses, but Federer has won 101 singles titles, considerably more than Nadal’s 81.

Nadal, 33, is four years younger than Federer and after outlasting Dominic Thiem in the Roland Garros final, commentators began speculating on whether the Spaniard can win more Grand Slams than the Swiss. 

Nadal, however, is trying not to focus on who’s won more than who.

“If I catch Roger or not, I am not very worried about it,” Nadal said, per BBC Sport.

You can’t be frustrated all the time because the neighbour has a bigger house than you, or a bigger TV, or a better garden.

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“That’s not the way that I see life. If, by the end of my career, I am able to win a couple more Grand Slams and be closer to Roger, it will be unbelievable.

“I am going to try my best to keep enjoying tennis, giving myself chances to compete at the highest level, and we will see what happens.”

Nadal said that if it were not for injuries, he’d likely have more Grand Slam titles than Federer anyway. “I lost, I think, around 15 or even more Grand Slams in my career for injuries.”

This season, Nadal played in just three events before the clay-court season. He even withdrew from 10 tournaments last year because of injuries to his stomach, hip, knee, and ankle.

Nadal appears to be over the worst and will be hoping to beat Federer once again at the upcoming Wimbledon Championships, the third Grand Slam event of the year.

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