Rafa Roundup: Rafael Nadal’s emotional message to Juan Martin del Potro following his retirement

Photo via Getty Images


“I’m practising with Rafa [Nadal] across the street, we’re playing a set,” Stefan Kozlov said of what occurred before the match.

“It’s like 3-3, 15-0, Rafa breaks a string, goes to his bag, I just happen to check my phone for whatever reason. Then I have 20 text messages from [officials] and they’re just like ‘get over here!’ So i drop all my stuff, I tell Rafa, he’s got a big smile on his face. You know, he’s super excited for me because he knew I was the number one lucky loser. So we stopped practice, I got over here, had about 30 minutes to get ready and just came out and gave it my all.”

The words of Nadal come after del Potro played what was likely his final professional match, at the Argentina Open on 8th February, losing to compatriot Federico Delbonis before receiving undying support from the crowd.

“He has been one of the most charismatic players on the tour for a long time,” Nadal told the ATP from Acapulco ahead of his campaign at this week’s Mexican Open.

“I feel very sorry that he was not able to enjoy the career that he deserved because of all the physical injuries and problems that he had over the years. I feel very sorry for him, the only thing that I wish him is happiness and hopefully he can continue with his life in a positive way without suffering too much pain every single day.”

“Incredible performance. Amazing fighter he is,” the 34-year-old said, speaking in Dubai where he has finally started his 2022 season.

“He said it, definitely one of the biggest wins of his life, in the circumstances, coming back after an injury.”

He continued: “I think it was four to five months ago that he was on crutches, and now he’s winning a Slam. I mean, it’s incredible. I got tons of respect for him.”

Social media related to Rafa:


  1. I’m getting really sick of Sascha’s behaviour now. He’s not 3 years old. We all get annoyed and frustrated about things, but you can’t go around carrying on like that. Imagine if someone who worked in an office or a shop or a factory did that at their place of work?

  2. So glad Rafa got 2nd Australian slam after being so close in the past and unlucky imho on more than one occasion. Without his injuries I think The GOAT argument would be settled.

  3. I am surprised that there are no comments about what ND told reporter Reem Abulleil before his first match in Dubai. Am I making a stink about nothing? I think ND’s response stinks. To me, it shows tons of disrespect toward Rafa’s AO win. The last sentence says it all.

    Here it is:

    “Djokovic on Nadal: I think it was 4, 5 months ago that he was on the crutches & now he’s winning a slam. It’s incredible. I got tons of respect for him. I don’t want to take anything away from his victory, me not participating in the tournament regardless.

    If you disagree with me, I don’t have a problem with that. I just wanted to get other Rafa fans’ take on that sentence.

    • Margo, I am still overjoyed Rafa got to 21 first. I don’t care what ND has to say. All I know is he is the first player who lost in a grand slam after missing two shots lol.

  4. According to Reuters:

    “Due to unsportsmanlike conduct at the conclusion of his doubles match on Tuesday night, Alexander Zverev has been withdrawn from the tournament in Acapulco,” the ATP said in a statement.

  5. A wise decision by Team8, Federer’s management group, to sever ties with Zverev. Regardless of
    his victories, he self destructs.

    • Isabel Lee, I agree it would be the prudent thing to do but I doubt if Team8 would go that far. Let’s see if they even acknowledge this incident.

  6. Totally unacceptable behavior from A. Zverev toward the umpire regardless of a bad call or not after his doubles match.👎 I don’t know the rules, but I think he should be heavily fined and suspended, just ridiculous. Rafa is a role model on and off court.👍❤️

  7. Tough conditions for the players, glad Rafa got it done in straight sets.🙏
    Rafa vs. Stefan Kozlov next
    Good luck to our champ!🍀❤️

  8. Wishing DelPo a much brighter future than what he has been having these last few years. A sweetheart of a guy, according to his peers.

  9. Lovely words from Rafa to Delpo, who will be trully missed on the tour. I hope his operation in Switzerland will go well.

  10. Awwww a genuine embrace between two great players🥰 All the best to DelPo!❤️

    Did anyone watch the match between G. Dimitrov and S. Kozlov? It was painful to watch toward the end of the second set, but what an incredible effort!👏 Stefan somehow managed to beat Grigor, unbelievable.😱

    Seems like Rafa and Stefan didn’t finish practicing, maybe they will meet in the second round.😁

    • Yes, Rafa can finish their practice session tonight in R2.

      Kozlov said he couldn’t believe his luck in getting into the main draw. He added that Rafa is one of his favorite players. Kozlov is most likely thrilled to be playing Rafa, a 21 Grand Slam winner. I hope he gets to play Rafa without cramping. Be gentle Rafa but I’m voting for you to win.

      • I am ready for the match.☺️ I hope Stefan recovers well, and Rafa in straight sets please.🙏
        Vamos Rafa💪🍀❤️

Leave a Reply