WATCH: Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer and Andy Murray reflect on US Open victories
After a three-year grand slam title drought, Rafael Nadal burst into 2017 with a blockbuster year, claiming the French Open crown and, later, the top prize in Flushing, Queens. Now, Nadal says he has to defend his US Open title when the action kicks off next week.
The world No 1 player said late on Friday that his strong performances this season - including clinching yet another French Open title in June - gave him momentum heading into the US Open.
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For Nadal, who has claimed 11 French Open titles in his career, earning himself the title of "King of Clay", trophies on the US Open's hard courts have been harder to come by - relatively speaking. Before 2017, Nadal won the tournament in 2010 and 2013.
World No 2 Roger Federer said at US Open media day he was excited to be healthy and in New York for another US Open run after missing the 2016 tournament and a third place finish last year.
2012 US Open champion Andy Murray, who only recently returned from a long injury lay-off, said on Friday he was just excited to be back on the hard court at Flushing Meadows after missing last year.