Casper Ruud says Rafael Nadal and his family have always been very good to him and he has nothing but a great level of respect and appreciation for the entire Nadal family. Ruud, 23, grew up watching and idolizing Nadal before he got a chance to meet his idol at the Spaniard’s academy.
Ruud, who is now a two-time Grand Slam finalist and one of the biggest names in the world, is grateful for everything the Nadal family did for him. “You can learn everything from Rafa, from any type of shot to mentality and professionalism.
When I arrived at the academy I was surprised by the intensity of each training session, and that has helped me to increase the intensity that I put into each practice. Rafa’s team and his family are incredible. They have always been with me, and they do a spectacular job with a young community,” Ruud said of Nadal and his family, as quoted on Sportskeeda.
Ruud was heartbroken by this Nadal defeat
In the 2012 Australian Open final, Nadal fell just short to Novak Djokovic in a five-set Australian Open final. That match lasted nearly six hours and Ruud admitted to feeling “sad about the loss” for a couple of days.
“I think I can say for Rafa. I wish I could change one result in the history of tennis and I don’t know if he’ll be angry or happy for me saying this. It’s not the Roland Garros final this year because it was not a very close match but Rafa’s Australian Open loss in 2012 against Novak.
I was probably even sadder than himself because that was watching six hours of TV and hoping Rafa would win and then it was probably one of the best matches ever. I think for days, I was still sad about the loss for him and I still wish today that he could have won.
This might bring back bad memories for him, but this is something I wish I could change and still believe,” Ruud said. When Nadal was asked about Ruud’s comments, he jokingly said he would ask Djokovic to give him the 2012 Australian Open trophy.