Roger Federer set to play ‘special’ final match of career on Friday with Rafael Nadal facing a ‘lifetime’ in the spotlight
Rafael Nadal is set to battle ‘lifetime’ with Roger Federer on Friday (July 25) in their first ever meeting since 2010, but the outcome could go down as a ‘one-off’.
The French Open champion revealed his side of the battle to the Press Association on Thursday (July 24), with his hopes of defeating the Swiss centre-court specialist in a three-set match that would be broadcast by the BBC.
The 27-year-old told journalists travelling with him to play his final match at the Allianz ATP Tour Finals in Genoa, Italy: “I expect to be playing a final match with Roger Federer.
“He has always done great and I’m not expecting anything else. I just want to make his life uncomfortable and he lives in a great atmosphere so I don’t know what to expect.”
Nadal revealed he had been in touch with Federer over ‘the possibility’ of them facing off in their last ever meeting with ‘no idea yet’ when the pair face each other at the Allianz Arena in Genoa on Friday.
The only person to have beat Federer at a Grand Slam title match this season is a fellow Swiss, Swiss Open champion Dominic Thiem, who overcame a five-set deficit in their 2018 World Grand Prix final on Wednesday.
Nadal was the more experienced and well-respected of the two men competing in the final of the third ATP Tour Masters1000 event of the season, and said his preparation had been’much less intense’ than Federer’s.
“The only challenge is when you play Federer you’ve got to be in the right mind-set,” he said.
‘Life is not easy’
Nadal insisted his preparation was going well, adding: “I’ve had a perfect preparation and everything is going perfectly. It’s going to be a tough match, but I’m really sure that he will be up to it.”
Federer, who was a double finalist at the 2015 Australian Open and the 2017 French Open, admitted his focus remained on winning his second singles title of the season and taking the title in Hamburg on August 4.