Is Rafael Nadal Now Officially In The Twilight Of His Career?

Sep 5, 2016

The 2016 edition of the US Open at Flushing Meadows has seen a number of extremely close matches so far which could have gone the way of either player, however the most notable of all those close matches was the fourth round men’s singles clash between 14-time Grand Slam champion Rafael Nadal and the rising young Frenchman Lucas Pouille, Nadal had been playing well throughout the tournament and was expected to beat the 22 year old Pouille to make yet another major quarter-final but the Frenchman had other ideas.

Rafa’s unexpected loss at the round of sixteen stage in New York begs the question then, is the champion Spaniard now officially in the twilight of his career? Based on what we have been used to seeing from Nadal over many years of competition at the majors, one would have to conclude that Rafa is indeed commencing the twilight of his career or he may even be some way into that stage of his career, Rafa’s best tennis is now definitely behind him and although he will still remain a force on the red clay at Roland Garros, it is difficult to see the King of Clay winning another Grand Slam title unless he gets a fortunate break in the draw.

Nadal has a great legion of fans who all love him for the champion he is, but the native from Mallorca now looks to be beatable in those closer matches when previously he was not, Nadal always seemed to find a way to get across the line in the tight ones and he even looked like doing so again against Pouille after saving three match points at 3-6 down in the final set tiebreaker, once he levelled the tiebreak at 6-6 most people expected Rafa to go on and win having been there and done that before, however this wasn’t the Nadal from yesteryear and it showed, it’s the little things that start to show as a champion player ages and gets tour weary, I think Nadal is certainly now in that category.

Having said all that, the 30 year old Spaniard is still ranked No.5 in the world so let’s not completely write him off just yet, however I would be reasonably surprised to see him reach the previous level that we were all used to seeing from him in previous years, Nadal has a very combative and physical style of play and this I believe is the main reason why we won’t see Rafa reach the top again, nothing is certain in top level sport however and Nadal’s fighting spirit will continue to help him if he stays motivated to perform at the top level, it remains to be seen whether Rafa is indeed in the twilight of his career, the 2017 season may give us the definite answer to that question.

Written by: Tono

(1) Comment

sneaky says:
Sep 7, 2016

Nadal is the ugliest player in the history of Tennis. He will very likely never win another major title. I do believe that Nadal is NOT going to win again. His strokes and his ugly defensive game, time wasting antics make him the anti-tennis. Too many young fans have been brainwashed by the media into believing he is this great player. He has had much success but there is a very big ? on whether he has used PED’S in his career or not. There is a dark cloud of suspicion on Nadal regarding possible PED use during his career. He has had many absences from tennis……..claiming injuries but has not had any surgeries to back up his suspicious claims of injuries. It is possible that he is NOT a PED abuser and a great athlete but also possible a drug cheater. The jury is still out on his guilt or innocence but I believe the fans should be careful before calling Nadal great.

Add Your Comments

You must Sign In to post a comment.

« Back