Rafa Roundup: “I’m going to die to be ready again to compete for everything”

Rafael Nadal Australian Open 2016 Nike Outfit (3)

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“I’m going to die to be ready again to compete for everything,” he says. “I’m going to work more than ever to try to make that happen and I have big determination to put me in a position to fight again for important things.

“When I had the problems in my knees when I was younger it was so tough when I used to wake up in the morning and go to practise, and I didn’t enjoy that. When you are not healthy then it’s tough. It’s tough now, but it was also tough when I was 20. But at the moment I am enjoying what I am doing and having fun. For me, it takes a lot of effort to come from last year, when I had a tough year and it was hard work, to get back where I was before the injury this year. So I’m really motivated to come back to where I was before the injury happened because I feel ready for it.”

“I’m really here to honour the great man, Rafa. I think it’s wonderful that he’s taken this journey on to give the kids something back,” Federer said. “I’ve been around the game 17 years. I’ve seen a lot of hard workers and inspiring players, but you’ve been the one in my opinion who has been the most inspiring and most influential and made me the player I am today. Because you’re left-handed, because of your spin, because of the intensity you bring to the court, I had to re-invent and re-work my game entirely. And that’s because of the person you are and how much you’ve trained.”

Their tennis styles differ, but their work ethics and values are one and the same. They understand that life is much greater than being perhaps the greatest players to play their sport.

Their camaraderie grows as they slip into the twilight of their careers, but they have left indelible footprints in the sands of yesteryear.

Fedal is a special rivalry. It’s a warm day in the midst of a nuclear winter, a refreshing example of sportsmanship and friendship, first and last.

“I think Rafa wants to get to 10 French Opens, that’s obvious. I think Roger Federer’s 17 majors are still within reach. He’s only 30 years old,” Wilander said on the sidelines of the tennis academy opening.

“People are worried about his health. Yes, he’s going to get injured because he’s a crazy man. He takes himself into the ditch. He drives himself into the ground and comes back. Realistically he’s going to win at least another grand slam...”

“The last two months before the injury I had been playing at the highest level, competing against everybody with good chances, and winning events,” he said.

That’s what I need — be healthy and keep practicing with the same motivation and the rest of the things are going to come back. I believe that I can fight for important things.”

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43 comments

  1. @RNF can you please advise how this rating thing works. I have read all the comments and find that those wishing Rafa gets enough rest, wishing him well, etc., have received negative ratings.

    A very insulting comment about Rafa actually received a positive rating. Obviously there must be some fake Rafa fans here. Is there any way of you exposing them so that Rafa fan comments are not unjustly given negative ratings? Thanks

      • I truly apologize that my with tongue in cheek comment has disgruntled you so.

        There is no way @RNF would literally “expose” anyone for unfairly giving a member’s positive comment a negative rating or vice versa.

        I find it sad that some members feel it necessary to preclude a comment with, “I am a true Rafa fan but…,” when he/she is about to offer a difference of opinion. I am not including nasty and mean-spirited comments.

        RAFA WILL ROCK ABU DHABI

    • Margo: typical politically correct. asking for censorship and oppressing of anyone dare to oppose them and have different point of view. what a sense of entitlement. you seriously think 14 millions of Rafa’s fan (faccebook fans) have the same opinion. Are you kidding me?

      • @Sosa LaFarte
        Please reread my comment and look up the meaning of censorship, which I never advocated for.

        What I did do was to question the FACT that comments wishing Rafa well; wishing him the best, wishing he gets rest, and wishing him goodwill, received thumbs down ratings while a mean spirited comment received thumbs up.
        I also stated that fans should not feel compelled to attest to their status or loyalty as a fan by precluding a statement with, “I am a true fan,” etc., before voicing an opinion that others may disagree with.

        Ad hominem attacks serve no one. My own status as a fan was questioned when I admitted I didn’t realize Rafa had never won the WTF. I thought Rafa had won EVERYTHING, but that’s just me being a fan.

        RAFA ROCKS

  2. Realistically, Rafa should be resting but he stated he would “take a few days off then start practice and exercise.” He didn’t give his wrist a chance to heal, he won’t rest, he wants to practice and exercise thinking those are the keys to winning. He is overlooking his deficits. I will wish him the best and see what fruit his methods bring forth.

  3. He plans to start playing at the end of Dec. I think he is rushing but I am not himself and his doctor. I hope he is careful about his injury this time. I think he should not play any tournaments before AO…

  4. I was saddened on not seeing Rafa included in the lineup for London. I am sure Andy’s mum is very proud to see him in the number one spot.

    Good luck to all at this ATP year-end tournament.

  5. Big talk by Rafa about being ready to compete for slams again. Not very credible from a man who quit his entire season because of long term performance anxiety. He was too nervous to play in Halle and Paris, but – now that the new season is still far away – he sits on a high, optimistic horse. The talk does not work anymore. You ‘fighted’ hard for 3 years now. But you failed to deliver.

  6. Dear Rafa,
    The sentence you had made ” I am ready to die” did hurt so many hearts. Never ever say that again. You already proved several times of winning CS & GS against your great rivalries & showed WHO IS RAFEL NADAL.
    all the best with love & regards,
    P

    • Love your heartfelt comment and I couldn’t agree more!

      But, Rafa has other ideas. I hope he doesn’t destroy himself thinking he is still capable of repeating his previous glories. Let’s see how he does at Brisbane, maybe he will fool us again.

      RAFA ROCKS

      • Agree with you Margo. I think Rafa himself does not seem aware that he cannot go on forever winning as he did a few years ago and he is doing more damage to his body trying. Like you I hope I am proved wrong. He is a fantastic fighter and will also always give 100 percent . I wish him the best of luck for 201 and no matter what I will always admire him as a tennis player and a human being.

      • That’s the thing. Our 100% is Rafa’s 150%.

        Think of all the years he has practiced and exercised up to five hours a day: the wear and tear on his body. Add the tournaments to his schedule. I too want him healthy but at this juncture all I can do is wish him well.

        I finally faced the extent to which Rafa will go just to compete. The shock of what he admitted to (injections) at the FO just broke my heart: for him, for me. No need to continue, you understand.

        RAFA ROCKS

  7. Rafa you are putting too much pressure on yourself… I would love to see you win more GSs, but if you do not you just need to remember nothing changes who you are in our hearts.

  8. Rafa, Congratulations to you and all, on the opening of THE ACADEMY.
    I am sure hoping to visit next year after Wimbledon.
    Also looking forward to seeing you in Sydney on 9th January,
    and in Melbourne at the Australian Open.

    You are suchhhhhhhhhhh a HUGE credit to yourself, family, Maria and your team.
    If you added a Sports Psychologist on a Consulting basis,
    and a consultant ex top player would be the way to go.
    It would take some of the stress off you,

    Love and prayers for the FESTIVE SEASON,

    AlaineXXSydneyXXAustraliaXX

    • Oh dear…the ATP has Rafa confirmed for Brisbane. You indicate that Rafa is playing Sydney. After Sydney is the Australian Open. These are three back-to-back tournaments which do not leave Rafa a rest before the Australian Open. I hope he rethinks this schedule if it is what he has planned.

      There is also a year-end exhibition. I don’t know who is confirmed.

      • Rafa confirmed Abu Dhabi (exhibition) some hours ago on Twitter. So it looks like non-stop playing in January is ahead…
        Abu Dhabi, Brisbane, (Sydney??), Australian Open, (two weeks off?) Rotterdam, (one week off) Acapulco, Indian Wells, Miami… wow.

      • Thanks much Fedallica for the Abu Dhabi confirmation. I hope he takes a break as I want him ready for the European clay tournaments. Fingers crossed! (No emoji for that…LOL.)

        ROCKIN’ RAFA

      • Oh dear, Why does he persist in an overloaded schedule? Especially with the clay court season following. He needs some energy left if he is to win the French Open. To say nothing of the fact that he needs to remain injury free.

      • When his 2017 schedule is looked at in its totality, I am sure he will have dropped some tournaments that he otherwise competes in, maybe adding new ones. Look at Brisbane for example. This is his first appearance (and I wish him the BEST).

        Some tournaments are mandatory so he has to figure out a schedule best suited to his talents and health. On a different post I expressed my desire that he be more selective and give more attention to the clay tournaments. I can’t wait to see his actual 2017 schedule.

        RAFA ROCKS

  9. Agree with all that you say Maria. Not a great fan of Andy but glad he knocked novak off the no 1 spot. Nice that all the big four got a chance at being no1 too. And if it can’t be rafa etc. I too am counting down the days……

  10. Yes Rafa you can do it..you are so talant a very good player.always with you. Fans love you .good luck Rafa 🎾🎾🎾🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸❤️❤️❤️🎾😉🎾🎾🎾🎾🎾🎾🎾

  11. There is no need to die trying, but find the missing link, whether psychological or physical; you are not the only player in this age bracket. What is wrong with adding a sports psychologist to the team? The fire is alive and burning; we hate to see all that physical effort not pay off in a win. Good luck on your journey. No one plays like you can! 🏋️‍♀️💪🔥👺👍👑❤️

  12. Whew! I read that as, “I’m going to die…” and myself nearly died right here!

    OK now I’ll read exactly what Rafa is going on about. At least he lives.

  13. Wonderful determination Rafa and would be the happiest person in the world if u start your winning ways again. Overhaul your mental state/ attitude and the rest will follow. God bless you!!!

    Vamps!!!!!!!

  14. I don’t usually like wishing time away but I’m counting down the days to the AO just so I can see Rafa play again , tennis over feels a bit lacklustre without him. I was lucky enough to catch a programme on the BTSport channel with showed 8 minutes of Rafa’s academy with interviews with Rafa and Uncle Toni, what a great place. I’m glad that Rafa hasn’t lost his love or enthusiasm for the game and sounds like he can’t wait for the new season to start. Roll on January 2017 , also well done to Andy Murray on becoming world No 1 , if it can’t be Rafa then im glad it’s you.

  15. Terribly missing Rafa. Missed him in Wimbledon, Basel and Paris. The thrill has gone.
    2016 was unbearable stressful, so many negative surprises. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if he comes back and stays for the entire season 2017. No injuries and other shocks, just one year with a solid Rafa (and with Roger, too) on the tour would be the greatest gift in this hard times.
    As always I am worried but right now I just wish his stubborness and die hard- attitude will finally bring him back to where he wants to be with his game. I don’t expect him to win anymore GS, but in my dreams his fighting will get rewarded. Only one more wish: Please Rafa, do it with some reason. Less tournaments? Less practice? He will do the opposite, for sure. I hope he will succeed with whatever way he chooses to go. Most of all I wish him less pain, inner peace, (but not in Djokers Guru-sense :)) joy and pleasure with the game. He should not put so much pressure on himself.

  16. Glad to hear that (please dnt use the word die), just work out smartly as I think u do anyway

    Tonya M Warren

  17. LOVE YOU BABY THE WAY YOU ARE. . I HAVE LOST INTEREST IN TENNIS, SINCE THE TIME YOU ANNOUNCED YOU WERE NOT PLAYING THE REMAINING SEASON.

    COME WHAT MAY, I M ALWAYS GONNA BE YOUR DIE HARD FAN TILL THE END.

    LOVE YOU ALWAYS RAFA. YOU ARE SUCH A WONDERFUL HUMAN BEING. SUCH GREAT WORDS FROM THE LEGEND HIMSELF (ROGER FEDERER )
    ONLY GOES TO SHOW , HOW MUCH YOU INSPIRE EVERYONE AROUND YOU.

    TAKE CARE, DON’T BE TOO HARSH ON YOURSELF.

    TAKE CARE OF YOUR HEALTH.

    LOVE N REGARDS TO YOUR WONDERFUL FAMILY N SUPPORT TEAM.

    BIG HUGS TO YOU, DEAR.

  18. I admire Rafa;s determination, optimism and fighting spirit. I would love to see him win his. 10th French Open. But as always I have the same worry about him. And that is his obsessive practice routines where he often practices up to three hours at a time, longer than most of his matches last. This must put a lot of strain on his body and when he finally gets back to tournament play again he is not coming back fully refreshed. I hope I am wrong with these worries but regardless I am a dedicated Rafa fan forever, no matter what he does.

  19. excellent video, I hope you will not die (please) but be careful with your body. to much punishment will not help.. what ever you do in tennis or your life we will always be with you bless you Rafa and thank you for so much great tennis. both you and Roger have given many hours to us allxxxxx

  20. Yes Rafa, I am with you, but if you think exercise alone is the key, the only thing I can say is you have not considered that perhaps a multi-faceted approach to tackle and resolve your various issues may be the way to go. Your team will be your downfall.

    RAFA STILL ROCKS

  21. I was pleased to see that Rafa would have made it to London even with his injuries this year. It is hard d to watch tennis without him, but I hope Andy can win today to teach number one. I think Rafa would be happy for him too. I am encouraged by Rafa’s comments and also hope it he will look to new solutions.

    • All the best Rafa and mostly please get a second coach who can work with uncle Tony to get new Technik’s. We know you can make it and we are cheering you.
      Judy

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