Rafael Nadal - Roland Garros 2022

Rafael Nadal in a ‘good moment’ as he prepares for fairytale farewell at Roland Garros

Rafael Nadal has claimed to be in a ‘good moment’ as preparations seem to be going to plan ahead of his final farewell at the French Open.

The Spaniard is in Rome for his last appearance at the Italian Open, a tournament that has become synonymous with his success in recent time.

Nadal takes on Zizou Bergs in the first round on Thursday and, speaking ahead of the match, he has offered positive updates on his physical fitness after playing six matches over the second period of April.

“Now is my third week on the tour almost in a row, so it’s a good moment,” said the 37-year-old. “Even if the results are not what they used to be, I am increasing my feeling [and] my level.”

Nadal pointed to his physical fitness as the main reason for his retirement, not the quality of tennis he is playing or his enjoyment levels on court.

“I am happy doing what I’m doing,” said the 22-time major champion. “When I’m talking about retirement, it’s not because I’m not happy anymore playing tennis or I’m not feeling myself competitive enough – that’s not the case.

“It’s about the body was not able to play weeks in a row, to allow me to practice and enjoy the practices on a daily basis. If you’re not able to do the things the proper way on a daily basis, you are not able to enjoy because of the pain and the injuries, it’s almost impossible to have success or to keep fighting for the things that really motivate me, no?”

Rafael Nadal at the Italian Open

Nadal’s comments put him in good steed to play some clinical tennis in the Italian capital this week, and offers positivity ahead of a busy summer.

The Spaniard has lifted the Rome title ten times, with his most recent coming in 2021 after an emphatic three-set win over Novak Djokovic.

Nadal has an astonishing 90% win record at the tournament, and has only ever been defeated by six different men at the Foro Italico.

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Jerome Coombe, Tennishead Writer, discovered his love for tennis journalism whilst studying languages and playing competitive tennis. He has a vast knowledge of tennis and strives to shed a light on all corners of the sport.