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Nadal: Federer retiring means an important part of my life is leaving too

Rafael Nadal knew he couldn't miss Roger Federer's final match, so made sure he was in London for the Laver Cup doubles game against Jack Sock and Frances Tiafoe.

Even though the Europeans lost 4-6 7-6 (7-2) 11-9, it was still a perfect farewell for the Swiss and Nadal was glad with how it went.

Federer and Nadal in tears at the legend's farewell

"In the end, it was very emotional and it was an honour for me to be part of this important moment in the history of our sport," Nadal told the Spanish media after the match.

"We have shared a lot of moments together over the years.

"With Roger leaving the tour, an important part of my life is going too."

"It was emotional, unforgettable and sad too, hard to describe.

"In the end, it was a very special day and a happy day for everyone.

"I'm very happy that after many difficult moments in recent times, he was able to retire on the court, in front of so many people, with the world enjoying watching him one last time. He deserved that.

"An icon is leaving, one of the most important icons in the history of all of sport."

Explaining why he felt it was important to be in London and to play alongside Federer, Nadal spoke further about their relationship.

"It was important for me because I knew it was important for him," the Spaniard said.

"I have had a personal relationship with him for some time.

"It was important for him to retire on the court and I couldn't miss this day, so here I am, even beyond the personal circumstances I was going through."

Nadal wasn't afraid to shed tears during the farewell ceremony and he discussed that too.

"I don't mind crying, sometimes crying is good as you need to let emotions out," he said.

"A big part of my life is leaving, so it's difficult."

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