Rafa Nadal will be challenging at the top for years to come, his coach Carlos Moya has said after the 31-year-old won two Grand Slam titles this season.
Last weekend Nadal beat Kevin Anderson in the final of the US Open, having won his tenth French Open earlier in the season. He also reached the final of the Australian Open, losing to Roger Federer in five sets.
A haul of two Grand Slams – not to mention ATP titles in Monte-Carlo, Barcelona and Madrid – completes quite the turnaround for Nadal, who was plagued by a series of injuries and a loss of form over the past two seasons.
Former World No 1 and 1998 French Open champion Moya joined Nadal’s coaching team in December last year and has helped to revitalise his career, and he sees no reason why Nadal cannot continue to dominate.
“If he can stay as healthy as he is now, without injury, motivated, looking after himself the way he is, we will be talking about Rafa for years to come,” Moya told the ATP Tour website in the week following Nadal’s sixteenth Grand Slam win.
“He is a player who broke records as a teenager and who is now breaking them as a veteran as well. This is something we haven't see much in the history of tennis.
“When I joined the team I knew that there was much more to come for Rafa, that if he stayed injury free and continued training with the same motivation, desire and confidence, that the tennis would come.”
Moya added that nothing about Nadal would surprise him anymore – as his compatriot continues to chase down Federer’s record haul of nineteen Grand Slam singles titles.
“He always gives the best of himself,” he said. “We are talking about one of the greatest players in history and, as such, my faith in him is rock solid.”
Nadal returns to action next month, playing a full Chinese swing before the season ending ATP Tour Finals in London.