Rafa Roundup: Nadal and Gasol raise more than €14m for Red Cross

Rafa and Pau Gasol in IW, 2014. (Photo via Rafa Nadal Facebook)


Rafael Nadal and the NBA’s Pau Gasol have announced that their Red Cross campaign has been successful in raising €14 million, more than their goal of €11 million.

The campaign also asked other Spanish sports figures to help with coronavirus fundraising in Spain, one of the most affected counties in Europe.  

“I think that between all of us we have achieved something important,” said Nadal. “Not only the funds, which is more than 14 million, so the goal has been fully achieved, but the togetherness that we have shown.”

From 2005 to 2019, Rafael Nadal has lifted 12 titles and won 93 of his 95 matches at Roland Garros. If the city of Paris dedicated a street to their adopted Spanish son, it would be apropos to make sure it went only one way.

“Rafa is fine playing 10-12 events a year, making sure he is up for the French, getting his matches in, playing the Masters Series events on clay. Going into the US Open with very few hardcourt matches, Rafa feels comfortable about it. I think that he used to feel the desperation to take reps on surfaces that weren’t clay and now he is comfortable enough at the ripe old age of 34 to kind of go and trust the process.”

“He is going to have to grind through the first couple of rounds to gain form. But then once he does that, he is a legitimate contender at any Slam. As long as Rafa is healthy, you got to think he’ll win one Slam a year at least.”

Remember Rafael Nadal’s capris? Or the year his French Open final victory was played across two days?



  1. I’ve been watching the quickfire UTS tournament devised by Patrick Mouratoglou. It’s fun and good to see, in the absence of the normal tennis tour. However, I had to smile as I thought of Rafa trying to cope with the 15 second stop clock….🤔😀 Then again, rules are rules and knowing Rafa, he’d adapt somehow.

  2. I hope Rafa stays in Mallorca. Can’t see him risking contracting this novel coronavirus to play in an empty stadium. If he does decide to play, which I feel is highly unlikely, I wish him well.

    Multiple reports are that Canada has canceled until 2021. Smart move as far as I am concerned.

    #RC20, which was scheduled to take place from August 8 to 16, 2020, will now take place from August 7 to 15, 2021. This postponement means that Toronto will host the men’s event in 2021. (2/2)

    • If these events actually take place the temptation for Rafa to play will be strong. He has thousands of points to defend although he has stated that those are not his primary concern at the moment.
      Plus he has the opportunity to overtake Roger in number of G.S. titles this year.

      Novak in an interview to be released today with European media is leaning toward going to N.Y. The USTA is allowing players to rent a house while there for $40,000. That would most likely suit him as well as Rafa.

      While there could be great reward the risk for Rafa at 34 years old is that playing 5 big events in less than a 2 month period, including switching from hard surface to clay, after a 5 month layoff could result in a career altering injury. He and his team must be having serious discussions.

      The coronavirus of course will have the ultimate decision.

      • Good news from Pauline that there is a way for players to get out of staying at airport hotels for weeks at a time at the US Open.

        Pauline is correct that the point situation could be a concern for Rafa’s team. Rafa doesn’t “chase points” but its hard to ignore the overall situation. Nole did not lose points for Wimbledon because it was not played. Same with Rafa for the Rogers Cup. But Djokovic and Thiem have nothing to lose and everything to gain from playing the US Open since they have no points to defend. Rafa, on the other hand, would lose 2000 points if he does not play. I would hate to see Rafa fall to third in the world if he does not play and Thiem wins in New York.

        Two weeks between New York on hard court to Paris on clay would be hard to handle but Rafa has managed to go from clay to grass in about three weeks after Roland Garros. Also if he won his 20th major in New York perhaps Roland Garros would only be icing on the cake.On the other hand maybe he is invested in having Roland Garros be the one that ties him with Roger.

        I don’t think the virus will be a deciding factor because it is in better control in New York than any other place in the US and the safety precautions mandated by the USTA are indeed extreme. Also the risk in Paris (or Madrid or Rome) will be just about the same as in New York.

        Good luck to Rafa and his team in balancing all of the factors.

  3. Well Margo, with the Adria tour being a free-for-all with no precautions, i wouldn’t be surprised if Novak and many others contracted the virus out there.

    • I saw plenty of pictures so neither am I surprised. Totally ridiculous.

      On Canada, I am perplexed that they even considered to have the Rogers Cup played in the US. I wonder how Canadian fans felt about that decision.

      The question I am asking is will Canada’s cancellation have an impact on whether or not the USOpen follows suit.

    • David Holztzman,

      You are assuming that the Covid situation will be the same in 2 to 3 months time as it is now. None of the top medical experts can even guess how it may go. It could very well come raging back in Autumn like the Spanish flu did in 1918-1919. So indeed the coronavirus will decide whether these tournaments take place.

  4. According to Essentially Sports, Nole, while in Belgrade, came into close contact with an asymptomatic basketball player. It was during an exhibition match in honor of a basketball coach. The article didn’t say if Nole is in quarantine.

    • Atptour.com has the revised tour schedule through Roland Garris, which is now officially moved to September 27.

      Madrid and Rome will take place during the two weeks between the US Open and the FO. The schedule begins with the Citi event (500 points) in Washington D.C., then the western and southern, US Open, Madrid, Rome then FO. The western and southern, Madrid and Rome are each Masters 1000 events.

      I have not seen whether the Washington D.C. event will impose all the same restrictions as the New York events.

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