London:Rafael Nadal put down his racquet and reached for the superlatives on Monday in his battle of wits with Roger Federer ahead of a possible blockbuster Wimbledon final.
The Spaniard, who has been runner-up to the world number one for the last two years, heaped praise on his rival despite condemning the Swiss to his worst career defeat in the French Open final just three weeks ago.
"I think he's a more elegant player," admitted Nadal.
"He has more options on court. He can do everything - serve and volley, he can serve better than me, the forehand he can play more aggressively. He's a more complete player than me in all aspects."
Despite his admiration for a player who is chasing All England Club history by trying to become the only man to win six singles in a row, Nadal knows that he has one particular weapon which has greater destructive power.
"Probably the defensive shot I have little bit better than him," said the world number two, aware that as the courts here have slowed, it could be his finely-tuned, back-to-the-wall mentality that delivers Spain a first men's singles title since 1966.
Nadal also believes that the two players, the dominant forces in men's tennis, have much in common.
"I think we are very focused all the time. We are making very good results, winning or being in the final rounds in a lot of tournaments during the season. That's very difficult. We also have a good mentality."