Social animal Nadal longs for pre-online days
MONTREAL — Rafael Nadal admitted on Sunday that he prefers the tennis environment of a decade and a half ago, when players actually had more human contact and less online time.
The Spaniard with 18 Grand Slam titles is back at the ATP Montreal Masters as defending champion after defeating Stefanos Tsitsipas for his fourth Canadian trophy last year.
The world number two remains among tennis’ elite, but the 33-year-old said that perhaps the “old” days were better for human communication.
“We had energy as younger players to do things but there were no social networks then, so you didn’t always have to be in front of a laptop,” Nadal said of the early 2000s when he began his world-beating career.
“There was more contact among the players than there is today. I grew up without the new world of social networks, and I prefer it that way,
“But the world changes and we have to adapt to the times,” he said.
Nadal said that while he of course uses various social media platforms, he also knows how to enjoy “real” life.
The Mallorcan who loves fishing and water sports, is awaiting delivery of a new yacht for use in the Mediterranean surround his home base.
“I know how to enjoy the life between tournaments,” he said. “I take everything with a little more calm.”
Montreal holds a special place in Nadal’s heart. It’s where he defeated Andre Agassi for the title in 2005 for his first elite hardcourt crown.
“Winning that title meant a lot,” Nadal said. “It was very emotional against Andre.
“I always have good feelings here and I’m looking forward to being ready again.”
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