The Clay Warrior, Rafael Nadal
, Spain's Raging Bull, currently has 51 titles on clay
, and has passed Vilas, fulfilling the original quest to 50 clay titles. Will he get to 60
before he retires? What about 16 majors
He took Monte Carlo and Barcelona and has Roland Garros to play. Does RG#10, and major #15, passing Sampras, come in Paris?
If he can win at Roland Garros alone from now through 2017, he'll get his 16 majors
with a total of 10 or 11 at RG
King of Clay Titles:
1. 51 - Rafael Nadal (ESP) - Spain's Raging Bull
2. 49 - Guillermo Vilas (ARG) - Bull of the Pampas*
3. 40 - Thomas Muster (AUS) - The Iron Man
4. 30 - Bjorn Borg (SWE) - Ice Man
4. 30 - Manuel Orantes (ESP) - Manolito
*corrected by ATP
Some factors to consider in whether he will be able to win 60 Clay Titles and 16 majors
1. How long will Rafa have enough passion or motivation to to keep playing much longer after winning so many Roland Garros titles, and what will happen if and when he loses there at this point in his career; will it signal the end?
2. Could health issues (ex. knees, back) force him to retire early?
3. Will some other Clay court adept start taking titles from him more regularly?
4. Will he start playing lesser clay events as his performance/ranking declines more (South America, etc), which could increase his chances of getting more titles?
Some of these have been answered recently. There are probably more factors which you will uncover as this is discussed.
Let's use this thread to keep track and discuss his chances as he hunts for more titles.
Please try to keep this discussion hate-free and reasonable, or mods will take action.