Rafael Nadal, Emma Raducanu behind the 2022 ESPY awards for best tennis players of the year

On Thursday, Rafael Nadal and Emma Raducanu won the 2022 ESPY award for Best Athlete Men’s Tennis and Best Athlete Women’s Tennis respectively. The ESPY award selections are based largely on popular opinion, with fan votes being a significant factor.

Nadal was one of four athletes – the others being Dylan Alcott, Carlos Alcaraz and Felix Auger-Aliassime – nominated in the Best Athlete Men’s Tennis category. Meanwhile, reigning US Open champion Emma Raducanu beat Ashleigh Barty, Iga Swiatek and Leylah Fernandes to the Best Athlete Women’s Tennis award.

This is the third time Rafael Nadal has won the ESPY award, having previously won it in 2014 and 2011. On the other hand, for Raducanu it is the first.

Nadal trails his Big 3 peers – Roger Federer (9) and Novak Djokovic (5) – for most ESPY awards by a male tennis player. Meanwhile, Raducanu joins the likes of Serena Williams (10) and Naomi Osaka as the illustrious winners of the award in recent years.

Rafael Nadal’s 2022 season so far

Rafael Nadal on Day Eleven: The Championships - Wimbledon 2022Emma Raducanu on Day Three: The Championships - Wimbledon 2022

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