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Nadal mulls over status symbols at home and work

media Rafael Nadal has the chance to end the season as world number one for the fourth time. Reuters/Aly Song

World number one Rafael Nadal on Monday spoke of his anguish as politicians in his native Spain battled with a constitutional crisis over Catalonia’s push for independence.

“There have been very sad moments for all of us in Spain,” said Nadal ahead of his appearance at the Rolex Paris Masters. “They have been tough moments but these things happen and you need to accept.

“I was born in a democratic country so I believe in my country and I believe in my people, and I believe that things are going to go the right way without incidents.

“The only thing that I want is that things get better. I don't want the fracture between people in Catalonia. I feel close to Catalonia. I love the people in Catalonia and most of the Spanish people feel the same. And that's the reason that's why we are sad about that situation.”

In contrast to the political turmoil at home, Nadal’s career is in fine fettle. He has won two Grand Slams in 2017 including a 10th French Open title and will finish the year as world number one for the fourth time if he wins his second round match against Hyeon Chung from South Korea.

“Of course, if that happens, it will be something important for me,” said Nadal. “But the season is not over and it is not the moment to think much about that. I must just try to think about trying to have the right preparation for the tournament and trying to be ready for the match.”

There have been 26 male world number ones since the rankings system was computerised in August 1973. However, only 17 have finished the year with such kudos.

“I am here to try to do my best as always,” added Nadal. “I needed to rest after the Shanghai Masters and had to pull out of the Swiss Indoors in Basel. That was something I was not happy with. But here I am now in Paris and just happy to be here in probably the most important city in my career."

Roger Federer’s surge to the title in Basel on Sunday prompted his withdrawal from the Paris event thereby clearing the path for Nadal’s probable anointment. The two could meet at the eight man ATP end of season championships which begin in London on 12 November.

“Probably after winning the Shanghai Masters and winning in Basel, Roger believes that it will be better for his body and for his preparation for London to not be here in Paris,” said Nadal.


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