Rafael Nadal Wins U.S. Open After Wimbledon Loss


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Number 2 ranked Rafael Nadal defeated Number 1 ranked Novak Djokovic, winning the 2013 U.S. Open. The sweet victory for Nadal is even sweeter when one considers the year he has had. Unable to compete in last year's U.S. Open, Nadal was home tending to his injured left knee; however, the disappointment from last year's exclusion did not keep him from attempting this year.

Similar disappointment befell Rafael Nadal in June of this year when he competed in Wimbledon, but left in the first round after losing to someone ranked 135th. Still, he did not quit, but rather looked forward to the chance for athletic redemption.

Nadal, excited about his win said, ''Very, very emotional, no? Probably only my team knows how much (this) means for me.''

Novak Djokovic proved that he is not a sore loser. "'He was too good. He definitely deserved to win this match today and this trophy," Djokovic said before adding, "Obviously disappointing to lose a match like this.''

Novak Djokovic continued praising his opponent. ''Thirteen Grand Slams for a guy who is 27 years old is incredible, whatever he achieved so far in his career, everybody should respect, no question about it,'' he said.

Know thy opponent well, isn't that the old saying? Nadal and Djokovic certainly know each other well as competing opponents having played thirty-seven matches against each other. In fact, this marks the third time that the two have gone up against each other in the U.S. Open within the last four years. In 2010, Nadal defeated Djokovic, but in 2011 Djokovic had the honor of winning the title. Now, in 2013, it is once again Nadal who has won the title.

The nature of tennis demands a certain rhythm and dance between the two playing against each other, and that is something Nadal and Djokovic seem innately driven to deliver during any match.

Even though Rafael Nadal collected $3.6 million in prize money he recognized the strength of his opponent. ''Probably nobody brings my game to the limit like Novak," Nadal said.

''It's what we do when we play against each other, always pushing each other to the limit. 'That's the beauty of our matches and our rivalry, I guess, in the end,'' Novak Djokovic said.

What is the secret to Rafael Nadal's victory? Probably a combination of perseverance, hard work, and knowing when to relax and enjoy life. So what was Rafael Nadal doing the day before his big win? He was relaxing with close company.

[Image and Video Via YouTube]