Rafa Roundup: Why did Lukas Rosol and Roger Federer criticize Rafael Nadal?

Rafael Nadal sends get well message to former Watford Observer photographer
Photo via @chadders_dm


Nadal’s two four-set victories over Martin Klizan and Rosol show improvement in several aspects of his game. From the first match to the second he hit more aces (six to 11), made more first serves (72% to 79%), won more first serve points (72% to 75%) and made a huge leap in second serve points won from 41% against Klizan to 62% against Rosol. His forehand is also getting more venomous, with nine more winners (15 to 24) and he is locking down his backhand to only make two unforced errors in four sets against Rosol. It’s the rock of his game that simply refuses to be broken.

Roger Federer has long been the king of the kindly delivered barb, the odd subtle criticism snuck in, almost unnoticed, with a potent sting in the tail. On Thursday, the seven-times Wimbledon champion chose slow play – and by inference Rafael Nadal – as his target, saying that if there are going to be rules, they should be enforced.

‘I think all the players should have the same time between the points. But always the best players, they’re taking much more than the normal players, and nobody is telling them nothing. I don’t know why,” said Rosol afterward. … During the match, he complained to the chair umpire about Nadal’s methodical pacing. ”Somebody has to tell them something. It’s not my fault. I said to the referee if it’s still okay, and he was saying to me, yes, it was fine,” said Rosol.

“Los mejores siempre consumen mucho más tiempo que los jugadores normales, y nadie les dice nada”, lamentó Rosol. “Cada vez que empezaba un juego, no pasaban 30 segundos, sino un minuto. No perdí por eso, pero el árbitro no aplicó las reglas”.

Federer’s comments came on a day when Rafael Nadal was accused of taking too long between points by his opponent, Lukas Rosol, but Federer said he was speaking from one of his own experiences. “I just realize it happened to me,” he said. “I did watch some matches. I don’t remember who it was. But they were playing so slow I was like, ‘Okay, I really—I can’t watch it.’ “That’s why I said that.”

Marc Aspland has received messages from stars including Rafael Nadal, Jessica Ennis-Hill, Alastair Cook, Andy Murray and Boris Becker. The 50-year-old award-winning sports photographer was found unconscious by the roadside in Harpenden after a cycling accident on April 10.

Rafael Nadal, Maria Sharapova and Roger Federer get the Centre Court treatment, but they shouldn’t face much opposition. Nadal opens play against No. 63 Mikhail Kukushkin.

Now that he is through that dangerous opening phase of the tournament Rafael Nadal will fancy his chances of going deep into the competition. After all, once past the second-round stage he has made the final every year since 2006 with the exception of 2009 when he didn’t compete. He should have too much momentum now for Mikhail Kukushkin when they open on Centre Court.


REMINDER: Nadal vs. Kukushkin – What time does Rafa play? / A que hora juega Rafa?


  1. I’m really getting sick of people complaining about players that would like the rules of the sport to be upheld Nadal takes too long to serve quite often. Is this sportsmanship? Not in my book. How would it be if in basketball certain team would be aloud to take longer than the shot clock dictates? Not done. What if players would step back after Nadal is delaying the game? They would have the right to do so. Nadal takes the speed out of the game most often of all players! This can be tactics. Why would he do this? On fast surfaces he is less than on slow (gravel) surfaces. (proof exit nadal)

  2. I bet if Roger and Rafa were kids playing in the same sand-box and Rafa was building
    these amazing sand-castles, Roger would probably complain that Rafa was using too
    much of the sand. I used to admire Roger for the great champion and gentleman
    that he is but these comments are so uncalled for and way off base. Maybe he’s
    trying to get in Rafa’s head in case they play each other in semi-finals. Rafa just takes
    it a match at a time. The only thing that gets in Rafa’s head is a way to figure out
    how to beat his opponent especially if he is behind. Roger, just focus on your matches
    and not “court politics”. I’ll still watch you because you also bring much joy to the world of

  3. Sorry Roger and Rosol both of u are not the best! why u will criticized? ahahaaaa. Poor u. Just sit back and accept the reality that u both are losers. booooooo. Be contented of what u have and had. So that u will earn more credits from us! Be a humble sportsmen like Rafa.

  4. What a bunch of ridiculous comments about a great champion, Roger Federer. He is neither jealous or a poor sport. Just speaking the truth. He has no reason to be jealous. His records speak for themselves. He is also a great humanitarian and philanthropist . He has given back so much and does not deserve to be belittled like this. Now Rosol,on the other hand is a total idiot. He was childish, malicious and disrespectful. I wouldn’t pay two cents to see him play a match. I too am a Nadal fan. He is a great player and has the heart of a lion. I think he will probably go down in history as the greatest player of all time. His career is far from over . He is truly a wonder to watch. I’ve never seen anyone who can dig so deep when the situation calls for it.

  5. How could a so called greatest tennis player of open era make such a stupid comment? It shows that he’s jealous and worried of Rafa’s success!

  6. Who is this guy Rosol?(nobody,in tennis I mean,he’s jeaulos)and Federer c’mon Roger, really? what a bad attitude at this point of your career to someone (Rafa)who’s always have showed respect to all the players,you included,of course.I thougth you were a fríend of his.

  7. I would rather watch Rafa than Roger anyday no matter how slow he just plays exciting tennis. Roger is always making these snide remarks and Rafa never says anything because he is the bigger man

  8. Why? Rosol because he was losing, and Roger because he’s not sportsmanlike. If the opponent gets irritated, it’s almost always to their own detriment, so they should just suck it up and look upon it as a few more seconds recovery time.

  9. rafa has all the good words for federer. he is not inferior while federer is.

  10. i tot roger is a good friend of rafa? why is it that he issued statements against rafa. like the one when he said rafa will lose in the first or second round?

  11. Rafa is such a gentleman…all thebest and keep on winning , forget Rosol he is nobody.

  12. Critics of the shot clock say that it would distract/disrupt the server because spectators would start counting down “5-4-3-2-1” as the clock wound down. That may or may not be true, but regardless, I think it would be a much better system than the current one where chair umpires have total discretion. It would be better for the fans, as well as the players, just like the Hawk Eye replay system has proven to be.

    I agree with Steve that a 20-second limit is far too short, especially in 5-set matches AND clay court matches. It should be a 25-second limit for ALL tournaments, with a 35 or 40-second exception following long points lasting 20 shots or more(or whatever number players & officials agree upon).

    Rafa himself has made the point that time-limit exceptions are needed for extra long points, because players need the additional recovery time. Otherwise, Rafa says, players will avoid engaging in extended rallies and will look to end points quickly, which would be bad for the fans and bad for the sport.

    As for Federer, he was one of the main proponents of the current system, but now he’s whining about it because it hasn’t hurt Rafa’s performance as much as he hoped it would. It’s pure gamesmanship from Federer, and everyone should recognize it as such.


  13. I wish Wimbledon could be played by people with class who show good sportsmanship and respect for each other! Good sportsmanship is what we try to teach our middle school and high school participants. Just because you are a professional does not mean you can drop your manners when you enter the court. I am really disgusted at the lack of sportsmanship on display at the 2014 Wimbledon! I wish the sponsors of Wimbledon would speak out and not allow it to continue.

  14. I wish Federer would stop his whining. Are fans complaining about slow play? Not any that I have heard. He is worried about slow play resulting in fewer viewers…..worry more about boring tennis affecting viewers! How many fans would choose to watch a Rosol match over a Nadal match because it is quicker??
    It seems that a lot of the guys that are serving bombs one after another, are able to play faster since they are expending less energy for the non-existent rallies. However ask any true tennis fan if it is exciting watching ace after ace in a match….
    It is true Nadal takes more time in between points but he is also the one most tennis fans would want to watch (IMHO). Federers tactics are clear…he knows he can’t win against Nadal so he is trying to anything to help him get an edge when and if they meet in the tournament.
    I agree they should have some sort of time limit between points but they should be the same for all tournaments. Why in a GS they are given less time does not make sense. In a long match that can go 4 or 5 sets you would think they may need a few more seconds between points to recover.
    Personally I don’t think 25 seconds is unreasonable. If the tennis is good and the fans are enjoying it then leave it alone and let them play. The Players Council should not be swayed by those with ulterior motives!

  15. What nonsense Roger is blabbing about.. Losing viewers? Really? Everybody loves watching Rafa play. Those difficult shotmaking, curve balls, passion and perseverance and that fighting attitude just make Rafa special. Obviously he is so jealous of Rafa.Our bull is grabbing all the headlines now from winning the FO 9x ans from pushing thru the 4th round of Wimbledon. And for surpassing him in the FB no of likes and for edging him in the Sports Illustrated and Forbwa highest paid tennis player, of course he is envious inside of him and judt so he will get attention, he turn into criticising Rafa…well he is just a hypocrite….Rafa is still the no.1 of the world and remains the most watched tennia player.

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