Rafael Nadal: Roger Federer skips clay court season because he knows he’ll lose

Rafael Nadal has said that fear of losing his aura of invincibility is behind Roger Federer’s decision to skip clay court season.

Federer took the decision after the Miami Open, recently claiming it was to preserve his energy for grass court season.

However, many in the game have insinuated that the real reason he skips clay season – including the French Open – is because he doesn’t feel he can beat Nadal, against whom he has a wretched record on the surface.

Now, Nadal has poured fuel onto that fire by saying Federer is scared of losing his “aura of unbeatable” whilst admitting he misses the clashed between the two on his favourite surface.

“With Federer I played a few times here [in Madrid]. In 2009, 2010 and 2011,” Nadal said.

“The matches against him are always difficult, but in Madrid a little more. They have been special meetings, and having been able to live them at home is something unique.”

“I understand that Federer must think that it is a major wear to play on the [clay] ground, that he has a fantastic winning dynamic and that in clay he can lose more games and lose that aura of unbeatable that he maintains on other surfaces.

“I think those two factors together lead him to make the decision.”