Rafael Nadal’s first victory on ATP tour – April 29, 2002 – Mallorcan Open

Rafael Nadal, 2002 (Photo via Vamos Rafa Facebook Group)
Rafael Nadal (2002)

At the age of 15, Rafael Nadal made his ATP World Tour debut at the Mallorcan Open in 2002, defeating Paraguay’s Ramon Delgado 6-4, 6-4 in the first round to become the ninth player under the age of 16 to win an ATP match.

Rafael Nadal, 2013 (Photo via Vamos Rafa Facebook)
Rafael Nadal (2002)

Following the win, young Rafa declared:

I really wanted to go out there and play well.

I knew it was going to be difficult, but I held my game.

I thought I played well, keeping the ball deep and maintaining power.

Not much has changed. Humble then, humble now! 🙂

9 comments

  1. Just watched Rafa play all 4 of his matches in Barcelona. He brings such excitement to the game and never gives up!

  2. His first official match in Open Mallorca, still playing there. Visited last year and the Tennis Club of Manacor. This year want to visit the new Rafa Nadal Academy, seen all the photos on the site. You can see why he wants to stay living there, the island is beautiful, has everything, beaches, coves lovely architechture, shops, night life. El sol. Fiona in Paris

    • Rafa: I love watching you play,regardless the results.You are a true champion at heart..You will always be my favorite player,your energy and drive is remarkable..I love your humble face,it has not changed a bit. Thank you for being such a great sportsmanship.You are a true legend!!!

  3. It look like all the fame and success hasn’t changed Rafa. Still humble and so very cute. Your fan always xx

  4. Hi I just want to say Love Rafa, such a humble Champ, cant stop watching his exciting Tennis even when he loses, the most exciting player ever!!!!!!!!!

  5. I literally burst out laughing when I saw that picture of him. Twelve years have gone by and like Roger said, ‘he’s still the same!’. Vamos Champ!

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