Rafael Nadal has arrived in Rome

Rafael Nadal has arrived in Rome for the 2017 Italian Open. Our champ was welcomed by fans on Monday afternoon. He will play Nicolas Almagro in the second round on Wednesday.


  1. I came across a TennisWorld article covering Fog’s purported Instagram “ear” pics: one pic is of a seated and most adorable baby elephant pictured with two huge question marks over her/his head. She/he is wearing a brightly-colored collar, a yellow hat, and seems to be smiling. [Humans tend to anthropomorphize animals.] Exactly where the text, “What a Pain,” is not indicated in any pics in this article.

    Then there is a pic of the one thumb-up.

    Under that is a pic of pink and possibly yellow headphones. There is no text included in any of these pics. I think he was poking fun because the pics are not malicious. The elephant is adorable and the headphones look like art.

    At least he is a man of his word. He bet against Rafa losing to Nole so now he’s gotta pay the restaurant bill. LOL


    • Tennis world is the article I have quoted from, I have not seen any pics , but the article stated that what a pain was wrote by the ears , not my words text taken from the piece i read.

      • Have just seen pictures , you will find there is also pictures of ears with words eh gia translation – of course . Che Dolores translation- what pain .

      • Again, those are headphones. Also, the only thing you quoted was about the bet Nick made. Everything else is written as if they were your words. I had no idea you were quoting from an article by TennisWorld.

    • Nick? My comments below on Fabio , pic shows headphones and ears , and the elephant is Dumbo the elephant

      • Yes, I did say a “most adorable elephant.” I could not assume everyone knows who Dumbo is.

        RAFA ROCKS

  2. Andy had a shingles outbreak, then he caught the flu, and then suffered a left-elbow tear, all in quick succession. I do hope he gets competition fit soon.


  3. Andy is shown the exit, thrashed by Fognini 6-2, 6-4. What a beat down. I hope Andy is not still having the same elbow problem.


  4. One angry little Fabio Fognini on the loose – After criticizing ATP for the schedule done to make a favour to Nadal, Fognini, through his Instagram Stories account, shared some photos featuring ears and wrote: ‘What a pain’, clearly referring to Nadal. Fabio shared not one, not two but three posts about it. Oh dear Fabio has a bit of growing up to do and quickly .
    He also went on to say-
    : ‘I lost a bet with my family because I thought that Nole would have beaten Rafa, now I will have to pay dinner to them as they picked Rafa to win the title. I get the feeling that Fabio isn’t to keen on our Rafa.
    Andy make sure you go out tonight and put Mr Fognini in his place .
    Well done to Bedene who certainly gave Novak a run for his money in the first set. Aljaz proud to have you on team GB and would take you any day over bad mouthed Dan Evans .
    Rafa , I hope you have managed a little rest ready for your match tomorrow Good Luck!

      • Hi Susie , just watching Andy now and hoping he can get his level of play up again, to knock Fabio out of Rome if nothing else .

      • Maria what’s wrong with Andy? Fabio is thrashing him. Think he may be going through what rafa was going through in 2015? Loss of confidence etc. He is defending champion and will lose a shed load of points if he loses this match. If this carries on he will soon lose his no1 spot. Don’t know what is up with him

    • Oh, what a mean character. I only know abt the “What a pain” thing now. I knew I was right for not being able to like him. NOT because he’s beaten Rafa. Just because of his behaviour and character.

  5. I hope Rafa’s opponents got to read Giri Nathan’s glowing article about Rafa, post-MM Open:

    “He steamrolled Djokovic 6-2, 6-4….and took down talented clay-courter Dominic Thiem in the final 7-6, 6-4.

    Though the 23-year-old Thiem played admirably heavy-hitting, high-risk tennis in the first set, he became just another skeleton in Rafa’s wake. The pattern is familiar: play the best tennis of your season, realize you’re down a set and a break, and wonder what the point of any of this is, this whole professional tennis thing. HOW DO YOU BEAT SOMEONE WHO FINDS A WAY TO WIN THIS POINT?” [Caps are mine, for emphasis.]

    Yes Rafa, you have always been a problem solver.


  6. I think Roger would have known he didn’t stand a chance of winning Nadal at RG ( he’s never managed it before) especially in Rafas’s present form and that’s why he has decided not to play there . Can’t really blame him for that , as I guess top players go into a tournament with the attitude that they can win in the final, but I’m sure he will be someone to worry about come Wimbledon.
    Nick Kyrgios is out of this tournament (Rome) as he is sporting a hip injury , so one less to concern Rafa , and who knows if Nick will be fit come the French Open. I love uncle Toni’s reaction on Rafas’s recent win over Novak – ‘We just pulled a damned thorn out of our foot ‘ he told .L’Equipe
    Sad news that one of Rafas’s great friend Argentine Juan Monaco announced his retirement from professional tennis on Monday. I never saw him play that often but he was a character .
    Good luck Rafa on your first match tomorrow against fellow Spaniard Nicolas Almagro , should I hope be a relatively easy match , especially after Thiem in Madrid . I did read a great quote after that match, that Thiem was just another skeleton in Rafas’s wake ( like it,)

    Divide and conquer Rafa

  7. Ddduuhhh…made the same error last year. No byes at slams. Thanks for the correction.


  8. Rafa has arrived indeed!

    Regarding the grueling schedule, I’m not really worried about that; so long as Rafa does not pick up an injury, he will be chomping at the bit by the time the FO rolls around. And he will have that week+ to rest if he has to, after Rome.

    Normal rules of rest and recovery that apply to us mere humans, do not apply to some of these professional sports people like Rafa, Djoker, etc. Australian Open 2009, Rafa played that grueling SF against Verdasco, which tired him out to no end, yet he still managed to take the fight to Federer in the final and win. In his book he writes about how he almost didn’t play the final due to fatigue. Or something like that. AO2012, Djoker had that epic against Andy Murray in 5 sets, which had us Rafa fans prematurely celebrating his sure victory in the final, as Djoker would surely be too tired to make a match of it against Rafa. We all know how that turned out- Djoker won in 5 sets after 6 hours.

    So yea, I’m not really concerned about Rafa playing so much. Just don’t get injured.

  9. Rafa must take care not to get too sore or tired or stale. Of course there’s no guarantee in life but still.

    So want him to win!


  10. Other Rafa fans may or may not agree with me but I’m disturbed by Roger taking time off to keep play longer and preparing for grass and hard courts. He wants to go on winning at least up to 20 grand slams if not more. I don’t want that. I’m a Rafa fan and Rafa fan only. @would live to see Rafa playing longer but he too will have to plan his schedule well if he wants to continue competing at a high level.

    And of course wish he wins the French and if possible Wimbledon. That would be super!!! But now I’m running too far ahead. Rome first!

    Rafa all the best!! Look after yourself well.

    You are the best!!!!


  11. Apologies the winner of a slam plays 7 matches not 8. Does anyone remember Steve Darcy taking rafa out in the 1st round of Wimbledon – was that 2013? Really ruined that tournament for me. I’m hoping no repeat of that this year for any tournament!

  12. I dont think there are any 1st round byes at the grand slams. I think only atp matches have byes for the top seeds. At Wimbledon the eventual winner has to win 8 matches which implies they play 1st rounds and I think it’s the same for all the slams.

      • Thanks Beverley. When I wrote that my brain was still on Rome [and the previous 3 tournaments Rafa played]. Poor explanation but the truth. 🤔

        RAFA ROCKS

  13. The reason Federer skips FO is not that he is afraid of Rafa, he knows that he won’t even stand a chance to a youngster like Zverev, Thiem.
    Serve and volley just won’t work on clay. He knows that his game now relies all on the serve and a good net game.
    The only challenger left is still Djokovic. I know he is struggling to find his form back but still he is still very dangerous. His short angle backhand is still a pain to Rafa’s crosscourt forehand. At Madrid , he could still produce some good winners from the backhand just like what happened in 2011. Rafa still needs to practice serving more. His first serve percentage is pretty shaky.
    As i noticed in Miami 2017 final, Rafa DID bring back that devastating serve that helped him win US Open 2010. He rotated his shoulder much faster and his first serve is around 120 mph!!! But again just like what happened in Indian Wells and Miami 2011, his first serve is real slow. Moya needs time to persuade Rafa to use that serve more.
    Also i highly doubt that Rafa would be in a good shape by the time French Open starts or not.

    • Hubris! I too for sure hope it will be la Decima. But to state that Djoko is the only challenger, pfooh, that is asking for trouble. There are at least 10 players that could cause an upset, Rafa on a mediocre day remains vulnerable, don’t forget that.

  14. Rafa all the VERy best for Rome and do get some rest in there wsome where for your your hard worked body,

    Love and prayers,]

  15. @va4favre [Respond link missing.]

    I agree with you. I just couldn’t see Roger playing RG without having prepared properly. Wimby makes sense.

    True, upsets can happen any time, at any tournament. I have banished the thought. Rafa will have at least a week-and-a-half between the end of Rome and his first round match at RG because of his first-round bye. He will be able to rest because he will have had plenty of clay play. I wonder if he will even rest.


  16. He deserves it and more
    Keep going Rafa u are the best we ove you and ur determination

  17. Commentators for the del potro match on sky have informed us that Roger Federer is not playing the french open. Go get it rafa!!!

    • If it is true Roger is scared of Rafa’s upsurge and would prefer to meet him on grass or hard courts but be wary Roger Rafa is on a mission.

      • I think Roger decided that he could not play well without at least one other match on clay. While we all want Rafa to win RG, we also know that upsets can happen even on Rafa’s favorite surface. Roger made a realistic decision to focus on the grass tournaments leading up to Wimbledon. I doubt that he will ever play another clay court tournament despite what he said about 2018.

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