Rafa Roundup: Roland Garros without Rafa is like a French bakery without croissants

(Photo by Aurelien Meunier/Getty Images)


  • What’s next for Rafael Nadal? Rest, recuperation and – he hopes – one final push in 2024 | Olympics

How cool would it be to see him end his career not only inside Court Philippe Chatrier in Paris, but also as the Olympic tennis event returns to clay for the first time in over 30 years?

“It’s difficult for me to predict how my situation is going to be, how my body is going to be,” Nadal said when asked if Paris 2024 could be the perfect farewell. “I don’t want to say one thing and do the other.

He continued: “Of course, [the] Olympic Games is one of the competitions I’d love to be at. I can’t say if it’s going to be my last or not. I hope to be there. Whether it’s my last tournament or not, I can’t say now.”

  • What is the French Open without Rafael Nadal? | ESPN

In May 2021, they unveiled a three-meter-high statue of Nadal near the Jardin des Mousquetaires, a permanent reminder of the man who has transcended the clay-court sport. It’s rare to mark an athlete with such a gesture while they’re still leaving sweat on the surface a few meters away.

But it was the first step in recognizing his legacy and also preparing for a life in that corner of Paris without Nadal. So what do they do next to mark his impact on the tournament? They’re unlikely to rename one of the existing prime courts, and the trophy is already named after the French “four musketeers” who ruled men’s tennis in the late 1920s, but nothing is off the table.

They hope they won’t have to make that call quite yet, but it seems to be approaching quickly — and this year will offer a vision of the unpredictable post-Nadal era.

  • Carlos Alcaraz’s ‘dream’ to play Olympic doubles with Rafael Nadal | NBC

Carlos Alcaraz said it would be a dream to play 2024 Olympic doubles with Rafael Nadal in what will likely be Nadal’s last time playing at Roland Garros in Paris.

“It could be a dream playing doubles with him in the Olympics,” Alcaraz said Friday. “So of course let’s see. Let’s see how he’s doing and how he’s going in this year. Hopefully, he’s going great. But yeah, for me, it could be a dream to play doubles with him.”

  • Rafael Nadal is my favorite among Big 3, says Yannick Noah | sportskeeda.com

Noah, however, said he favored Nadal over the other two greats due to his humility.

“Rafa, of the three, is the one I like the most because he respects the ballboys, the transport people, the people when there are no cameras. If you think about things beyond what people measure, Rafa is number one by far. Rafa won 22 Grand Slams and when you see him, he is still the same humble guy he has always been. For that reason, out of the three, he’s my favorite,” he opined.

VIDEO: “Roland Garros without Rafa is like a French bakery without croissants” – Steve Weissman

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  1. Tennis itself is nothing without Rafa. the young people of today just dont seem to want to fight this djokovich chap – riding the wave of luck with just nobody to stand up to him whereas poor Rafa had to fight so many stalwarts all his life sheer bad luck for such a beautiful sportsperson. Pray for his wife, little son, and the elders of his family… hope they get the strength to face a future without the successes of the recent past (never easy to do that) and wish they get a future that is even more beautiful and successful in the form of RafaNadal junior…

  2. The list of injured players continues to grow. Rafa is not alone in fighting to stay healthy; many players are considerably younger also. It is a brutal grind, mentally and physically. We can only marvel at how mentally strong Rafa has remained; if anyone can fight back to a competitive level, it is Rafa. FO will not have the same glory without Rafael Nadal; he has set the gold standard for achievement, class, and dedication.
    It is a struggle to muster much enthusiasm to watch a match today, regardless of who is battling.
    You are simply, The Best❤️

  3. It has been difficult for me to verbalize how I feel about Rafa and all that has happened to him in the past 6 months, in both his suffering with an injury that doesn’t want to go away and his having to withdraw from one match after another… How difficult those circumstances were for us to hear, but for Rafa…I can only imagine the devastation he lived with over and over again canceling this tournament and that tournament… A harsh reality to come to terms with….I think the one thing in his press conference that resonated with me over and over again and still does is… ” I don’t deserve to end my career like this, in a press conference.” My answer is …No you don’t Rafa…
    And so I am aware of his intent for 2024… and for the moment I am not talking retirement…I am merely looking forward to the “Return of Rafa Nadal”. That’s as far as I want to go for the time being…

    I enjoy reading all your comments as we have a common bond…that’s for sure.

    Rest and rehab Rafa… No rush….

  4. I am refusing to “give up” on Rafa and he isn’t 100% sure he’s done, either!! I will not say he’s retiring until HE says it. And he hasn’t. He’s said he wants to heal and then play and “see what happens.” I will never give up on the man who never gives up! And RG is not the same. And they HAVE named a court after him there! He may turn up to surprise us for the “official dedication” ceremony. VAMOS RAFA!!

  5. All sporting careers come to an end eventually. Roger’s retired, Serena’s retired, and next year it’ll be Rafa’s turn. He’ll be sadly missed, and Roland Garros in particular won’t be the same without him. I hope so much that he’s able to play next year.

  6. Normally I am looking most matches and especially Rafa.
    Now I don’t, there’s nothing to see, since Rafa is a synonym for Roland Garros.
    I miss you Rafa, keep strong and now all your fans are right behind you !

  7. Come on people, let’s fill up the comments section! I finally have made peace with myself about the fact that Rafa will more than likely retire in 2024. I have hoped and hoped that he would heal well and soon so that he could be back on a court, especially RG.
    RG is special for me because of the fact that I was born in Paris, and watching the matches from there is super special, but when Rafa is playing there, it feels like home. Hoping for one more match there next year. Rafa: if you ever read the comments on Rafael Nadal.com you would see how much we care, idolize ,respect and miss you, very much like the rest of the world!

  8. Exactly. Roland Garros is Rafa.
    This is he who’s won this 14 times and the crowd love him dearly.
    Yes, this one like the Italians without Gelato (yummy, btw) or Australia without their kangaroos.
    He will be definitely miss at RG this year.
    Be safe, speedy recovery and the GOAT of tennis.
    No 1 always.
    VAMOS Rafa

    • I would never stop to appreciate your professionnalism and would never stop loving YOU!

  9. Roland Garros is nothing without Rafa . For Rafa IS Roland Garros. I do miss bit seeing him in the court . He’s been my favorite since I first saw him when he was 16 . Magnificent. Beautiful soul heart of gold 😍

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