Rafa Roundup: Here’s why Rafa can’t understand people who don’t want to go to Olympics

Photo by Corinne Dubreuil / FFT
Photo by Corinne Dubreuil / FFT

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“My first Grand Slam was at Wimbledon in 2003. It had always been a dream for me,” said Nadal. “But the most important thing is a victory in the second round and not the 200 victories. It’s only another number.

“I won two matches with comfortable results. I played the way that I had to play to be in the third round,” said Nadal. “After a difficult first three games today, I played a solid match with not many mistakes and having control of the situation most of the time. I need to keep playing better if I want to have chances in the next rounds.”

Only 13 tennis players have carried their nation’s flag at the Opening Ceremony of an Olympic Games, and Rafael Nadal will join them in Rio.

“It’s a true honour,” beams Nadal, who won singles gold in Beijing in 2008 and played doubles as a 17-year-old in 2004. “I’m very excited. For me it was an amazing feeling when I was told I would carry the flag in 2012. It was terrible news when I had to pull out.” Instead he had to watch at home as basketball’s Pau Gasol proudly bore the standard instead.

Nadal continued on his stance: “Everybody is free to do what’s better for [themselves], but I know how tough was for me when I had to lose the 2012 Olympics in London. For sure, I cannot understand people who don’t want to go to Olympics. No, is something that is not every year. Is an event that you can compete only once, twice, or three in your career maybe, if you are lucky.

The former No. 1 and French Open champion penned a short but heartfelt letter to Nadal — anyone can do so via a Nike store in Paris — in which he called the soon-to-be 30-year-old “inspiring.” Agassi then posted it on Twitter.

“It took me most (of) my career to accomplish the herculean task of winning the French Open one time,” Agassi wrote. “Watching you attempt to win it for the tenth time is not only remarkable … it is inspiring. You make me believe in life that anything is achievable and nothing is impossible!”

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66 comments

  1. Absolutely gutted for Rafa , I really thought he was a strong Contender to take the title this year. Can understand why he can’t risk carrying on and making his injury worse. Listening to the commentators though they don’t think he will be back in time to play wimbledon as this injury usually takes 2-3 months to heal. Rafa’s style of play has certainly tested every part of his body. Wishing Rafa a speedy recovery can’t say anymore

    • Yes Maria, I am too.

      I know he is in a lot of emotional pain due to his pullout. And so close to his B/D.

      Wishing you wellness Rafa!

      YES YOU ROCK, RAFA

  2. Now could anyone be able to stop that arrogant from achieving calendar career grandslam in this weak era???

    So lucky!!!!!

  3. I still think it’s a technical problem. It coudn’t be bad luck for just so many times. Whenever he feels good with his flat shot, the wrist injury happens.

    Time for a change. Andre Agassi should be the right coach for Rafa.

    • god bless u great sir
      this is a time u wish him good health and speedy recovery rather than coach

  4. EXTREMELY SORRY RAFA, TO HEAR ABOUT YOUR WRIST INJURY. N VERY SAD N DEPRESSED THAT YOU HAVE RETIRED FROM THE FRENCH OPEN.

    NEVER MIND, WE JUST NEED YOU TO BE HEALTHY N FIT.
    DON’T DESPAIR. ALL OUR LOVE N GOOD WISHES WILL ALWAYS BE WITH YOU. .

    LOVEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE YOU RAFA.💖 ALWAYS.

    LOOK AFTER YOURSELF.
    🌹🌸🌹🌷🌾🌽🌼🌻🌺🍁🍂

  5. Rafa I am devastated by your withdrawal. You are still my champ and I look forward to your total recovery in flesh and in spirit.

    RAFA ROCKS

  6. Devastated… Rafa Has withdrawn from the Tournament with a wrist injury. Such a huge loss for RG no Roger no Rafa..

  7. Yb – yes he will and lets not forget if andy gets to final and novak is there – andy beat him in rome final – their last match!

  8. Now nole does not even have to face rafa… wtf.. can anyone b any luckier… I hope he looses again like last year.. but I can’t see that happening again.. maybe pray for andy.. just sick to my stomach.. after all the hard work.. I can’t imagine how rafa is feeling right now.. 🙁

  9. Heart-broken for Rafa, and everyone who loves and supports him! Speedy recovery, and be strong, my hero!

  10. Just heard rafa pulled out of rg with wrist injury. Im saddened 4 him. Anyone but novak – please

  11. Very sad news!

    Apparently Rafa has officially announced his withdrawal from the French Open

    Wrist Injury as we earlier suspected

    Sad!

    Wish Rafa a smooth recovery

  12. Rafa pulls out of RG.. wrist injury…. thats devastating. . :(… anyway.. hope it’s not serious. .

  13. BTW i still dont get why the player cant get points after the Olympics. I mean it is like 5th Grand slam or the tennis player, they should get rewarded in their ranking if they play good in Olympics.

    • I think it’s because not all the players will be able to participate in the Olympics, even if they want. There is a quota for each country.

    • You have to question whether or not the ATP or the ITF have the authority to award points for a tournament not governed by them.

      Points were awarded in the past but the Olympic committee changed that.

      More than one Masters tournament claims to be the fifth grand slam. The Olympics is in a category all its own. No monetary awards, just a gold, silver or bronze medal which is priceless.

      RAFA ROCKS

  14. For me it is hard to understand too, why somebody dont want to compete in Olympics. In my family when the Olympics is on , we watch/ listen/ follow it all day. i will never forget when i was in middle school and the Sydney Olympic was in school time and the whole school watched Olympics between lessons , sometimes instead of subjects.

    • Rafa is speaking for himself as he clarified that everyone is free to make his own choice.

      For transparency’s sake, and transparency’s sake only, let’s hear the other side which, maybe, some of you are unaware.

      Three of the four, well-known tennis players who will not go to Rio, have participated in past Olympics. The fourth is young enough to go in 2020.
      Reasons given for not going are; no points will be awarded; scheduling conflicts (World Cup); and last but not least, “I have to do what is best for my career.” In 2015, many tennis players
      complained about the scheduling so I am not at all surprised that some have chosen to not participate in Rio.

      I hope the games in Rio are a success but the possibility of civil unrest, Zika and a government in turmoil would have been more than enough to keep me away.

      RAFA ROCKS

  15. Rafa Wants to attend the Olympics. He has explained how privileged he is to have been chosen as his country’s flag-bearer. He was obviously heartbroken by not being able to attend in 2012.
    He is expected to play singles, doubles, and mixed doubles, already having chosen to partner with Murguruza.

    I was more concerned with safety, and a government in flux rather than Zika. All I can do is support him in his decision. I hope he comes home with more oro.

    RAFA ROCKS

  16. why take unnecessary risk of injuries and the virus infection going to Brazil? he’s already won an olympic gold medal in singles. but Uncle Toni has already decided that Rafa should compete in the olympic.

  17. Rafa,congratulations on your latest achievement.

    Spain will be well represented by having you as their flag bearer at the Olympics.
    An extremely well deserved athlete, who is a credit to himself, his family, his friends and his country.
    An amazing role model to all of us and in particular the youth and children of today.

    Love and prayers Rafa for next game,

    AlaineXXAustralia

  18. Rafa, you have achieved a Career Grand Slam and you are an Olympic Gold Medalist. Spain has chosen well in having you as her flag bearer in the Olympic Games. I am so very happy for you because I know how much it means to you. You so much
    appreciate being a part of the Olympics where only the best athletes compete.

    Please stay focused for round three because my entire family is betting on you, as we always do.

    RAFA ROCKS

  19. Andre and Rafa. The only 2 Golden Career Slam champs in tennis. What a great message from Andre to Rafa. Vamos!

  20. As you always say Rafa, “One match at a time,” and I am with you on that. As always, I am impatient for your next round. MMWHAAAA

    RAFA ROCKS

  21. As a fan I am appalled, considering Agassi’s admitted banned drug use, that his note to Rafa is posted on a Rafa fan site. The world knows how Rafa feels about the sport of tennis and of his vehement stance against doping in particular. I hope Rafa gave his approval to have this note posted in connection with his good name.

    I’ve always known how very special you are, Rafa. Wishing you an uncomplicated round three. I hope you are improving to your satisfaction.

    RAFA ROCKS

  22. I have just watched on UTube the best ever match in tennis history between Rafa and Roger Wimbledon 2008 I watched at the time but watching again today I can’t beleive how amazing it was
    Rafa and Roger are. The best ever and I can’t imagine we will see this ever again
    So go Rafa win again in RG

    • I watched the full match on youtube recently. It brought back so many memories. It was the first time I had ever clapped eyes on Rafa. I remember phoning my sister and saying ‘you’ve got to see this kid’. I was fascintated by him. We were transfixed and phoned eachother throughout the match we were so excited. I didn’t even understand tennis scoring at the time and had to work it out as I went. It was a special and memorable day!

  23. I really wish Rafa could win La Decima since he is such a remarkable athlete, but an even better person! It is so moving how he talks about the honor of carrying the flag at the Olympics. I thought the hand written letter from Agassi was also special. He knows how hard it was to win the FO once. Sadly, wishes don’t make it happen, but Rafa seems on the right track.

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