Jul 9, 2008

Nadal arrives home as hero, aiming to be the world #1

After a successful run at the Wimbledon Championships, Rafael Nadal arrived to a hero's welcome in his home town of Manacor on the Spanish island of Majorca, and declared that the number one spot in world tennis is now his goal.

"Now it has become a little objective," Nadal said.

Nadal has long been world number two, behind five-times Wimbledon champion Roger Federer of Switzerland.

However, Nadal admitted that things have changed after beating Federer in Sunday's historic final.

Federer continues to lead the way in the ATP ranking with 6,600 points, followed by Nadal on 6,055. This is the closest gap for them.

Nadal acknowledged that he has "good options" to reach the top spot in the upcoming North American tour, when he plays the Masters Series tournaments in Toronto and Cincinnati.

He was acclaimed by hundreds of fans - including Balearic Islands regional president Francesc Antich and Manacor Mayor Antoni Pastor - as he waved to them from the balcony of the Manacor town hall.

Nadal, 22, said he stands a chance of becoming world number one provided he maintains his current level of play and keeps "working with the same humility," while he again praised Federer as "the best player in history."

I think he made the right decision by pulling out from the Mercedes Cup due to fatigue and to prevent further injury to his knee.

(Images by JAIME REINA/AFP/Getty Images)
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