Rafa Roundup: Rafael Nadal Makes the World a Better Place

LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 27:  Rafael Nadal of Spain during a practice session prior to the Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Championships at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club on June 27, 2015 in London, England.  (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
Rafael Nadal during a practice session prior to the Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Championships at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club on June 27, 2015 in London, England. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

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“I feel good. I won a tournament on grass after five years, a good moment for me and a special one. Let’s see if I am able to compete well then at Wimbledon. I’m so happy to be here, you know. Healthy, that’s the most important thing. Last year I was better, after 2012 and ’13, that I couldn’t play well here. Too many problems with my knees.  It’s good, losing or winning, doesn’t matter, but it is good to be healthy on the second most important surface in my career, without any doubt.”

“I played golf,” revealed Nadal, who swings a club right-handed like his two-handed backhand and owns a 2.7 handicap. “After Roland Garros I went back home, played golf and spent some good times with family and friends. This time off was very important for me and I needed it.

Although he’s had some bad defeats at the All England Club in the last few years, losing to Lukas Rosol, Steve Darcis and Nick Kyrgios, you don’t get to five Wimbledon finals without being a master of grass-court tennis. I’m not sure either that losing to Novak Djokovic at the French Open will have that big an effect on him mentally. As far as Rafa is concerned that will be history. What I do worry about is how he would fare if he came up against the best players, how he would cope with a Federer or a Djokovic or an Andy Murray. I think it would be tough for him to beat any of those guys. I hope I’m wrong because Nadal’s a great person. If we had more people like him in the world it would be a much better, richer, healthier and more gentle place.

“The people in charge don’t understand or love this sport. The current situation is unusual; it isn’t good to see this in a country with as much tennis tradition as Spain has”. … “What we have to do is prevent these things from happening. Seeing all this controversy in the media isn’t good for our sport. It doesn’t help with sponsors or in terms of people getting involved and interested in this sport“, explained the 29-year-old.

Rafael Nadal: Mathlete. — Q.  Traditionally this tournament has had a lot of great left‑handed winners.  There seem to be fewer left‑handed players on the tour, especially the top ranks of the tour, apart from yourself.  Why do you think that might be? RAFAEL NADAL:  There is less lefties than righties, no?  Is a question of percentage.

A Nadal-Murray quarter would be one to watch, a hard one to pick, and a potential blast from nightmares past for British fans: Rafa has knocked Murray out at Wimbledon three times, but Muzzer won their last meeting, in Madrid in May.

LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 27:  Rafael Nadal of Spain in action during a practice session prior to the Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Championships at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club on June 27, 2015 in London, England.  (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

“It is obvious that when Serena Williams is playing well it is difficult to beat her. It is difficult to make that happen but it is obvious that she won in Australia and at Roland Garros, and they were probably the most difficult ones for her. She loves it here and has the right game to play at Wimbledon, and it is one of her favourites, so if she does it [season grand slam] it will be amazing and I wish her the best of luck.

PHOTOS: Rafael Nadal Practices At Wimbledon

AUDIO: Rafa Nadal: full pre-tournament press conference (via Wimbledon)

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4 comments

  1. I wholeheartedly agree with all the positive comments on Rafa!!! He’s just so special; he’s a joy to watch on and off the court because he’s just an exceptional human being. I’ll always root for him and always be deliriously happy when he wins!!!

  2. I ditto Bollettieri’s comments re: Rafa. Doesn’t matter if he wins or loses, if he’s No.1 or No. 110, I will always love and support Rafa. How can you not love him? What’s not to love? So charming and beautiful in so many many ways.

    I will always be a Rafa fan, and nothing will EVER change that.

    Lets go my beloved Rafa; I’m wildly cheering for you.

  3. Rafa is just awesome. He is a great player and a lovely person! That’s the reason why we all love him! Vamos Rafa <3 <3 <3

  4. Lovely compliment from Nick. I met Rafael briefly in Barcelona and was so impressed, he has an incredible aura but his gentle and genuine connection with people was special. He does make the world a better place. Rafa forever our champion person

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