Rafael Nadal ‘not obsessed’ by Roger Federer ambition in attempt to stay ‘healthy’

Australian Open: Rafael Nadal reacts to win over Michael Mmoh

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Rafael Nadal claims he is “not obsessed” in becoming the most successful men’s tennis player of all time. Nadal is currently level with Roger Federer on 20 Grand Slam singles titles. The Spaniard has the chance to overtake the Swiss at the Australian Open this week.

Nadal has reached the quarter-final stage despite being hampered by a back injury.

The 34-year-old caught up with Federer’s tally last year by winning the French Open.

Nadal says he is motivated to compete and win at the four Grand Slam tournaments.

But he claims there is no obsession with becoming the best, because he thinks that can lead to an unhealthy mindset.

“Well, of course I am but I am not obsessed, I said,” Nadal said.

“I play tennis. I like tennis. I like what I am doing. That’s the main thing.  

“I mean, of course I am very motivated to win Grand Slams and to play in the most important events of the year.  No doubt about that.

“The only thing that I said is I have never been obsessed to try to be the best or to try to – no, I just did my way. That worked for me.

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“I think the ambition is important, to have an ambition, but a healthy ambition.

“If you have too much ambition then you can be frustrated when you are not able to achieve all the things that you wanted. I never approached the sport and my career that way. That’s it.”

Nadal says his main aim is to enjoy his tennis but admits he cannot always be on top of his game.

“I enjoy, I give my best always,” he continued.

“I try to compete at my highest standards every day. Sometimes the highest standards are 60 percent, sometimes they are 100 percent. 

“But I just try to give my best throughout my career, and that’s it.

“For me the main thing is come back home with personal satisfaction that you gave it everything.

“That’s what gives me happiness and makes me stay calm.”

Federer opted to miss this year’s Australian Open as he continues his road to recovery from double knee surgery in 2020.

The 39-year-old is set to return to action at the Qatar Open in March.

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