Published On: Mon, Sep 11th, 2017

Nadal thanks uncle Toni, life itself after winning 16th Slam

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Joe Wolfond

34m ago

REUTERS/Andrew Kelly / Action Images

Rafa Nadal was feeling grateful after winning his 16th major title at the US Open on Sunday, and he wanted to give credit where it was due.

He started with his uncle Toni, who’s been his primary coach his entire life, and has been there for each of those 16 championships. It’s also the last Toni will be in attendance for, as he’s effectively resigning his post in order to tend to Rafa’s tennis academy in Mallorca after this season.

“I can’t thank him enough for all the things he did,” Nadal said in his championship speech. “Probably without him I would not be playing tennis.”

After that, Nadal got a bit more philosophical, turning his gratitude toward a grander, more all-encompassing force that has carried him to where he is.

“I can just say thank you very much to life for that opportunity,” he said.

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