50 years ago, Manolo Santana became the first Spaniard to win Wimbledon. Interviewed by Mutua Madrid Open website, Rafael Nadal, the only Spanish player aside of Santana to win at the All England Club, talked about the legacy of Santana.
“In Spain there are three or four sportsmen who are the pillars of the individual sports. Manolo is definitely one of the most important ones. Along with Seve Ballesteros and Angel Nieto, the success of Spanish sportsmen began. I could not watch him (Santana), but my Uncle Toni always told me about him. All of us are grateful to him for all what he did and what he has continued doing.”
Feliciano Lopez’s remarks were interesting as well. According to Lopez, “Manolo showed that in Spain, football wasn’t the only sport. By winning Wimbledon he made a huge difference than other tennis players. He has always been active in the tennis world, first as Davis Cup captain and then as the tournament director of the Mutua Madrid Open.”