Rafael Nadal explains why he doesn’t applaud opponents like Novak Djokovic does

Rafael Nadal says the reason he doesn’t applaud opponents’ winners like Novak Djokovic does is simply down to personal choice.

World number one Djokovic is noticeable on court for paying tribute to opponents when they play a quality point, although it is something that is usually missing from Nadal’s behaviour.

He, though, says it’s not a big deal that he doesn’t do it as often as others, as ultimately it’s the job of the fans.

On no applauding opponents, Nadal told Corriere Della Serra: “Sometimes I do. It’s rare but it’s normal.

“We are not here to applaud each other. It’s up to the public to decide.”

Nadal is the most demonstratively competitive player on the ATP Tour and that is something that has intensified, not receded, during his near 20-year career.

However, he insists his on-court demeanour is far removed from the way he conducts himself off the court could not be any different.

“I’m not shouting in the locker room. I take an ice cold shower, listen to the music in my headphones and, yes, I tie the bandana.

“But I have never allowed myself to intimidate an opponent.”

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