Rafael Nadal has revealed that he will take no special satisfaction in matching Roger Federer's Grand Slam record of 19 should he ever be able to reach that milestone. The Spaniard won two Grand Slams in 2017 to take his tally to 16 but was matched by the Swiss ace to extend the gap to three.
Nadal went on to win six titles in 2017, which included two Grand Slams – the French and the US Open – and confirmed his place as the year-end world number one for the fourth time in his career. This season has been one to cherish for Nadal, his best after 2013, when he won 10 titles and he will look to carry his form into 2018 as he faces a sterner test with a host of big hitters returning to the fray.
In comparison, Federer started the year by defeating Nadal in the final of the Australian Open and went on to win seven titles, including Wimbledon. Federer is expected to take the court again by storm in the coming year, having had a disappointing end to 2017 as he lost the ATP World Finals to David Goffin in the semi-finals.
However, Nadal is not giving too much thought to the prospect of matching Federer's Grand Slam tally.
"At Grand Slam level I wouldn't say so; he still has three more, which is a lot. It's not something I think about anyway. I'm happy with what I'm doing and if things go well and that opportunity presents itself, then great. But when I hang up the rackets having overtaken Roger, if it happens, won't give me more satisfaction in my career," Nadal told Spanish paper AS when asked about the possibility of bettering Federer's record.
Nadal went on to add that he does not see himself playing at the same age as Federer but is open to the possibility if his fitness and motivation allow. The Spaniard will turn 32 in June next year while Federer will celebrate his 37th birthday in August.
"I'm not thinking about that. Everyone has their path and they are all different. I think that what is good for one person isn't necessarily good for someone else. I'm 31 and the 37th birthday Federer is going to celebrate for me is a long way off," Nadal added.
"And right now I can't see myself playing at the same age as Federer. But you never know, because it's all down to fitness, having the enthusiasm to carry on playing and being prepared to do so."