Nadal: I am very grateful to readers of XLSemanal by electing me among so many good athletes


XL Semanal: What has been your best moment, the happiest one, in these past 25 years?

Rafa Nadal. There have been many. I can't say one in particular, because I've almost always been happy. I've been surrounded by very good people, and that's what's most important.

XL: Don't you even have a best sports moment, a special victory...

Rafa Nadal. I couldn't say just one. I can't say if I was happier winning Roland Garros or Wimbledon. I've been happy many times.

XL: The readers have chosen you way out ahead of other sportsmen. Not even the football players can put you in the shade. Why do you think you have so much support?

Rafa Nadal. I don't know. I'm very grateful to the readers who have chosen me. There are many outstanding Spanish sportsmen. I imagine that when it comes to choosing it's more of a personal thing whether you like one or another.

XL: Do you think you're so highly valued for your personality, for your correct image..

Rafa Nadal. I think I'm natural, as natural as I can be. I try to say what I think, almost always..

XL: But always taking care not to hurt anyone's feelings..

Rafa Nadal. I don't think so. When I've had to argue, I've done that. But it's complicated at times. I have my own opinion on many topics, but I don't think I should always give it.. or want to, either.

XL: A compulsory question: when will you be back?

Rafa Nadal. I don't know. I'll be back when I'm completely recovered. That's the priority.

XL: 25 years is nothing. Where were you in 1987?

Rafa Nadal. In my cradle I suppose. I was one year old.

XL: What event would you underline in the past quarter of a century?

Rafa Nadal. 9/11 has had the greatest impact on me. I was playing a match in Madrid at the time. The images of the aircraft and the towers falling... A few months earlier I had been up there with my family.

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