Uncle Toni dispels Rafael Nadal retirement fears following French Open comments
The former coach and Uncle of Rafael Nadal, Toni Nadal has voiced his opinion on his nephews potential retirement after the 21-time Grand Slam claimed that any match could be his last at Roland Garros.
Rafael Nadal has battled his way into the final four of the French Open after two gruelling matches back-to-back.
On Tuesday, Rafael Nadal won the 59th instalment of his legendary rivalry against Novak Djokovic, advancing to the Paris Slam semi-finals for a 15th time with a 6-2, 4-6, 6-2, 7-6(4) victory.
Before that, Nadal came through another epic battle in the fourth round on Sunday after being taken to a fifth set for the 3rd ever time at Roland Garros by Canada’s Felix Auger-Aliassime.
Following the mammoth match against the young Canadian, Nadal hinted at retirement, claiming he was unsure on how long his career can carry on for due to his chronic foot injury – which flared up during the Rome Masters.
However Toni Nadal, who now coaches Auger-Aliassime, has shared his thoughts on this year’s Paris Slam being Nadal’s last stating that he is “confident” Nadal will return to play on the red dirt of Paris.
Speaking in an exclusive interview with Spanish Radio station Onda Cero, the 61-year-old Spaniard told reporters, “It is more logical that it was played during the day but I am confident that this will not be his last Roland Garros.
“I hope so but I don’t know. I haven’t talked about it more than necessary with him. I hope he controls his problems and continues playing for some more time.
Toni Nadal continued, as he claimed that despite the injury potentially becoming trickier to manage year on year, he thinks that Rafael Nadal will return to the French Open.
“When you are in these tournaments, you go to the limit and Rafa is going to do it again. Every year it is more difficult but I think there is time to recover.
“When you have more pain than you should, it tires you out. Rafael competes because he thinks he has a chance of victory, but with pain the options are reduced and you can’t make an effort like this every year.”
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