Rafael Nadal admitted to feeling touched by seeing his “favourite sportsman” Tiger Woods return to glory on the grandest stage on Sunday.
Woods claimed a 15th major title with a sensational victory at the Masters, his one-shot success at Augusta affording him the opportunity to don the green jacket for a fifth time.
That triumph ended Woods’ 11-year wait for a major championship – a hiatus that at one stage looked impossible for him to end due to a series of troublesome back injuries.
Nadal – himself a 17-time grand slam champion – knows a thing or two about returning from injury to prosper on the world stage, and the Spaniard paid tribute to Woods as he prepares to begin his campaign for a 12th Monte Carlo Masters crown.
“It is amazing. He is probably my favourite sportsman in the world since a long time ago,” Nadal said.
“I know a little bit [about] how hard he has worked to be back. I was very emotional yesterday.”