Nadal keen to cherish every moment
"To put another trophy in my museum, in my academy, is going to be something great. Eleven is a lot, especially here in Monte-Carlo."
Rafael Nadal began the European clay-court season in familiar fashion: by winning the Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters
The Spaniard will depart the Côte d'Azur with hardware in his luggage for an 11th time in 15 visits after an authoritative 6-3 6-2 success over Kei Nishikori in Sunday’s final.
It was his 31st triumph at Masters 1000 level, more than any other player, and he looks set to enjoy another glorious spring. It’s also the fifth time he has romped to the title in Monaco without conceding a set.
Nadal will commence a 171st week as world No.1 on Monday - and therefore overtake John McEnroe in the all-time list for weeks in top spot. It’s another significant achievement for the ‘King of the Clay’, and he remains the man of the moment.
The Spaniard may have now gone unbeaten at tournaments on 76 occasions, but he still cherishes every moment in the winner’s circle.
“My true feeling is these kind of things are not going to happen forever, so I just try to enjoy them and to play with full passion and with full energy and concentration, full love for the sport until I can," Nadal told the AtpWorldTour website.
"I know the day to say goodbye is closer than 10 years ago. It is something that I am not worried about, but it is a real thing. I am just enjoying every day and trying to play with the best attitude possible, to keep being happy playing tennis. That's all.
"Of course it is a special day for me. Winning again this title here in Monte-Carlo means a lot, especially because it is the first tournament in the year that I finished.
“To have the victory in a Masters 1000, especially in Monte-Carlo, that for me is one of the most important ones in terms of personal feeling and in terms of history of our sport. I am very excited and very happy for everything."
"The history with this tournament is unique. To put another trophy in my museum, in my academy, is going to be something great. Eleven is a lot, especially here in Monte-Carlo."
Nadal will now turn his attention to the Barcelona Open, which begins on Monday.