Spanish tennis great Rafael Nadal said his goal was to enjoy playing tennis and avoid getting hurt.
Following seasons marred by injuries, Nadal regained his form this year to win his 10th French Open and third US Open, among other titles, and surge to the top of the ATP rankings.
“For me, being number 1 does not have any influence, it is one more achievement. I see it as recompense for a career,” he said on Tuesday during an event in Malaga, Efe news reported .
“I do not feel better being number 1 or 2. My inner feelings do not make me think about this before a match, I just think about what I need to do to beat my rival,” the 16-time Grand Slam champion added.
Addressing the ups and downs of the sport, the 31-year-old Nadal praised the benefits of time and hard work and said that “maintaining hope is fundamental to being able to win”.
Doing his best in the year’s remaining tournaments is the focus for now, he said.
“I have never won the ATP Finals and it is obvious that I am hopeful of doing it (this year), but there are seven other players who also want to do it,” Nadal said.