The Spanish award is intended to "acknowledge scientific, technical, cultural, social and humanitarian work carried out internationally" by prominent people in a variety of fields, including sports.
Nadal told the press after this year's Australian Open that he planned to nominate Federer.
"I won the award in 2008 and of course I'd like a colleague and a friend to win it because he deserves it," said Nadal.
The award comes with some serious swag, namely a Joan Miró sculpture "representing and symbolising the Awards" and a cash prize of €50,000 (that's almost $70,000 USD).
But the nominee must be present at the October awards ceremony in order to accept the prize, and this was the deal-breaker for Federer, who will be a new father by then. Federer reportedly explained in the Marca sports newspaper:
“I’d like to thank Rafa Nadal and Pau Gasol (L.A. Lakers basketball player -ed.) for having considered me, but it won’t be possible. It’s always difficult for me to travel to Spain because I have a very busy schedule and I also have to think about my personal life...maybe next year is a good moment to nominate me."
Federer also added that while his son may interfere with his awards ceremony appearances, the lil' slugger will not affect his tournament schedule.
Awwwww! Poor Rafa! We fellow-Fedophiles understand your need to worship and adore your tennis hero!
Click here for more information on the Prince of Asturias Awards.
Photo caption: "Don't cry, Roger, I have the perfect consolation prize in mind."
This article originally appeared at GOTOTENNISblog.com