Paris: The Spanish tennis star Rafael Nadal on Wednesday became the fourth player to earn 1,000 Open Era singles victories, but in an ’empty and silent stadium’.
Nadal grabbed the milestone after securing a 4-6, 7-6(5), 6-4 win over Feliciano Lopez in the ongoing Paris Masters.
With this win, he joined Jimmy Connors (1,274), Roger Federer (1,242) and Ivan Lendl (1,068) in the 1,000-win club.
The 34-year-old expressed elation over achieving the ‘special number’ and said that winning many games mean ‘I am old’.
“That means that I am old. That means that I played well for such a very long time, because to achieve that number is because I have been playing well for a lot of years and is something that makes me feel happy, no? I just can say thank you very much to all the people that helped me and all the people that in any moment of my life helped me to be where I am, no?” Paris Masters’ official website quoted Nadal as saying.
“It has been a special moment. I know is a very special number, 1000. Even if it’s not the same to celebrate something like this without a crowd, I enjoy it with ATP, with the president of the French Federation, with Guy Forget, supervisor and the ball boys,” he added.