Rafael Nadal had his ups and downs in 2022. The Spaniard had a perfect start to the season (20-0) and claimed both major opening crowns for the first time in his career. Nadal claimed his 14th Roland Garros title and reached the Wimbledon semifinal before an abdominal injury ruined the rest of his season.
Rafa is the only player with 22 Major titles, and he had more notable achievements in the season behind us. Nadal got off to a good start at his beloved Major in Paris despite foot problems. The Spaniard found himself in the round of 16 for the 17th time in 18 trips to the French capital, scoring three wins and entering the history books.
Rafa debuted in a Major at Wimbledon 2003. He overcame two obstacles and became one of the youngest players in the third round in the tennis cathedral. Two years later, Nadal claimed his first Major crown at Roland Garros a couple of days after his 19th birthday, writing history as the last teenager to hold a Major trophy before Carlos Alcaraz.
Rafa has been among the players to beat on the biggest scene over the past 18 seasons, improving his game and overcoming injuries to remain competitive in the GOAT race. Nadal has won at least one Major title in 15 seasons, with several notable records at the highest level.
The Spaniard achieved his 300th Major victory in the second round of Roland Garros last year, becoming only the third player to do so after Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic.
Rafael Nadal earned his 300th Major victory at Roland Garros last year.
Rafa scored the historic victory against Corentin Moutet during the night session on the Philippe-Chatrier court.
Nadal defeated Moutet 6-3, 6-1, 6-4 to join Federer and Djokovic in a major achievement. Rafa was broken twice and delivered seven breaks from 12 chances to enter the exclusive ‘Club 300’. Rafa shot 27 winners and 22 unforced errors and hammered out the win in midrange exchanges of five to eight shots.
The Spaniard got an early break in the second game of the encounter after Moutet’s double fault. Both players served well after that, and Nadal held at 30 in game nine for 6-3. Rafa fired a forehand cross in the first game of the second set to extend the lead.
He broke again at 2-0 with a forehand down the line winner and held on the next for 4-0, doing everything well in those moments. Rafa hit a game-winning shot in the seventh game to deliver his third break and advance 6-3, 6-1 in 80 minutes.
Corentin broke early in the third set and moved 2-0 up to get some momentum. However, he hit a forehand in the fourth game to lose serve and bring Rafa to 2-2. Nadal built the lead with a break at love in game eight after a game-winning volley into the net.
The Spaniard served for the win at 5-3 but scored a backhand to break and prolong the battle. Corentin got a second chance, but it wasn’t for him as Rafa broke him at 15 in the tenth game to seal the deal and celebrate a great achievement.