Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic cancel planned exhibition match in Saudi Arabia

A planned exhibition match between Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic in Saudi Arabia has been called off.

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Rafa and Nole were due to take part in a one-off exhibition contest in Jeddah on December 22. They committed to the event over a year ago and were under pressure to pull out after Amnesty International condemned the plans following the recent death of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

The Serb told BBC Sport on Friday:

Nadal is injured, so the match is not happening this year.

Thankfully, the exhibition match is finally cancelled. And let’s be honest we all know it’s not just because of Rafa’s injury and Nole is likely to face more questions about the situation in the coming days. Anyway, it was a safe excuse to do the right thing.

Source: BBC


69 thoughts on “Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic cancel planned exhibition match in Saudi Arabia

  1. Margo


    14 December 2018


    LONDON — The ATP, governing body of men’s professional tennis, has announced the final shortlist of candidates bidding to host the ATP Finals. The cities of Manchester, England, Singapore, Tokyo, Japan, and Turin, Italy, have been selected by the ATP to progress and will now be assessed alongside London in the final phase of the bidding process to host the ATP Tour’s crown jewel event from 2021 to 2025.

    The announcement of the final shortlist follows an extensive bid application process that began in August 2018 in which more than 40 cities worldwide expressed an interest in hosting the prestigious season-ending event. The final phase of the process will see the ATP visit the candidate cities to further review their respective visions for the ATP Finals, with a decision on the successful candidate to be made not before March 2019.

    N.B. The above is an excerpt only.


  2. Lorna

    I really enjoyed watching Rafa & Roger playing doubles in the Laver Cup last year, so i’m delighted that they’ll be repeating this partnership in 2019.


  3. Margo

    Laver Cup has announced that Rafa will team up with Roger for its 2019 edition. I wonder what the implications are for this. Davis Cup? Year-end ATP tournaments? Hhmmmmm


  4. Margo

    For 2019, I hope certain fans have realized by now that we don’t raise Rafa by denigrating his opponents. If you’re going to fling ACCUSATIONS, please back them up with FACTS.

    What this site has taught me is to double check my sources. All too often a Spanish language article conflicts with an English language version and/or even a French one.
    And that’s why I endeavor to supply all sources. I welcome comments, constructive criticism, and yes, even corrections.

    Wishing all Rafa fans and RNF management a great New Year and an exciting 2019 following the greatest competitor there ever was in the history of tennis [my personal opinion].



  5. Margo


    New post on The Grandstand

    Nadal returns to practice, set for Abu Dhabi later this month
    by Ricky

    Rafael Nadal is back at practice and apparently good to go for the lucrative Abu Dhabi exhibition late in December followed by a January schedule that includes the Brisbane International and the Australian Open.

    For the first time this offseason, Nadal posted a photo of himself practicing.

    👇🏻💪🏻 entrenamiento, practice! pic.twitter.com/z0nQNQvWnv

    — Rafa Nadal (@RafaelNadal) December 10, 2018

    The second-ranked Spaniard has been sidelined since retiring from his U.S. Open semifinal match against Juan Martin Del Potro. He missed the entire fall swing, including Masters 1000 events in Shanghai and Paris plus the Nitto ATP Finals due to various injuries–ankle, abdominal, and hip.

    “Rafael took the decision to correct a problem he was having in training and the federation doctor recommended he do so,” Toni Nadal noted. “When I spoke to him his intention was to start training again around 4th or 5th December, and he will have more than a month to arrive in good conditions for the Australian Open.”

    With Nadal healthy, Novak Djokovic in borderline dominant form, and Roger Federer reigning as the two-time defending champion, the Australian Open figures to be especially intriguing in 2019.

    “I’ve been in touch with Rafa and he’s back to full fitness after cutting his season short after Paris and can’t wait to arrive in Australia,” tournament director Craig Tiley said in a press release. “And there are so many contenders who have the game, fitness and ability to break through on the men’s side. Kei Nishikori has had an incredible year, as have Marin Cilic and Kevin Anderson. The young guns [Alexander] Zverev, Dominic Thiem, David Goffin, and Stefanos Tsitsipas are all on the cusp of a breakthrough at this level.”

    Before those festivities get underway, Nadal is set for the Abu Dhabi tournament along with Djokovic, Kevin Anderson, Dominic Thiem, Karen Khachanov, and Hyeon Chung. It takes place Dec. 27-29.

    Ricky | December 11, 2018 at 4:53 AM |


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