After two consecutive losses in 2006 and 2007 to Roger Federer in the final of the Wimbledon, Rafael Nadal finally managed to beat his arch rival in 2008 in a match that is regarded as one of the greatest of all time in the history of the sport.
"Wimbledon for everybody is special. When I was a kid most of the time I saw Sampras winning. For me, it was a personal goal," Nadal told the BBC.
"Well, I think 2006 I went to that final without believing in victory. 2007 was a completely different story. I felt ready to compete and I was there. I lost the 5th and I had my chances. In 2008 I was playing great. I came into the final with the feeling that I was not the favorite but I was ready to win. And I never stopped believing in victory. I had some tough moments, especially in the fourth set."
In a match that lasted four hours and 48 minutes, Nadal beat Federer 6–4, 6–4, 6–7(5–7), 6–7(8–10), 9–7. "Of course, I was very nervous. I think everybody was nervous. The only thing that stays on my mind is I feel myself falling down and just screaming," he said
The Spaniard would then go on to win the Wimbledon once again in 2010 and since then, his best finish at the grass court Grand Slam has been runner up in 2011. In the last two editions, he finished in the semi-finals, losing to Novak Djokovic in 2018 and Federer in 2019.