Rafael Nadal’s coach and uncle, Toni Nadal, believes his nephew needs to focus on simply winning the French Open title and not on retaining the No. 1 ranking.
“It would be fantastic to win in Paris for the ninth time in ten years,” Tennis World Italia quoted Toni. “It’s true, Rafa lost the final in Rome but (he) returned home happy because his game has improved.
“I would immediately change the number one rankings if it meant winning a Grand Slam. I would sign to win the Roland Garros and finish the year in third or fourth place in the ATP rankings.”
The comment is an interesting one considering the world No. 1 is in a position where he is required to win the title at Roland Garros if he is to maintain his spot atop the rankings mountain.
Djokovic has worked hard to put himself back in a position where he can regain his No. 1 ranking. The Serb could potentially surpass his Spanish nemesis should he perform well in next week’s French Open tournament. At the very least, Nadal can afford a semi-final loss as long as Djokovic loses in the second round of the tournament. IF Nadal loses before the semi-finals then the position is guaranteed to switch back to Djokovic.
The 2014 French Open takes place between May 25 – June 8 at the Stade Roland Garros in Paris, France.