November 21, 2019

Rafael Nadal keen for Roger Federer Wimbledon duel, regrets no US Open clash

Rafael Nadal contemplated on Wednesday the last chapter of his “unique” rivalry with Roger Federer at Wimbledon, but lamented that the two heavyweights never show up at the US Open.

Nadal and Federer will meet for the 40th time on Friday in the semifinals of Wimbledon, which will be the fourth meeting of the couple at the All England Club.

Federer won the 2006 and 2007 finals before Nadal won the 2008 title in a five-set epic series.

At Roland Garros, the pair has faced six times, while they have met four times at the Australian Open.

But when it comes to the final Grand Slam of the season in New York, the two never managed to meet at the Arthur Ashe Stadium, with a capacity for 24,000 people, the largest stadium in the sport.

That is despite the fact that Federer has five titles in the US Open, while Nadal has three.

The 32-year-old Spaniard said that no matter how much he enjoyed his Wimbledon rivalry, the New York gap in his head-to-head record was a source of repentance.

“We played a lot of good matches, and here in this tournament we played two big finals, 2007 and 2008. They were two emotional games.

“Personally, 2008 was a bit more emotional for me, but I appreciate the fact that I was also part of 2007.”

“Then we played a lot of matches all over the world, only in New York we did not play, that’s the only bad news.”

The two-time Wimbledon champion, Nadal, was discharged as a grass court force when he could not go beyond the fourth round in the tournament between 2012 and 2017.

However, he was agonizingly close to the final in 2018 when he lost to Novak Djokovic in a semifinal of five hours and 16 minutes.

“Playing against Roger is always a unique situation, I am excited to return to this field against him after 11 years,” added Nadal.

“I always say the same thing: the opportunities to play against each other are less and less, but we’re still here, after tomorrow we’ll have another chance.”

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