Rafael Nadal to prepare for Wimbledon at Mallorca Open

(AAP) – Rafael Nadal will start preparing for Wimbledon next week with practice sessions on the grass courts used for the Mallorca Open, a WTA event in Spain, tournament organisers have confirmed.

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After extending his record haul of French Open titles to 11 by winning Roland Garros last Sunday, Rafa withdrew from the Queen’s Club Championships, a key Wimbledon tune-up to be played in London from June 18-24. In announcing that decision on Wednesday, he said his doctors had advised him to rest.

The Mallorca Open courts will be played that same week in the small town of Santa Ponsa, located about an hour by car from Rafa’s hometown of Manacor.

Rafa is then expected to travel to London to continue his preparations for tennis’ grass grand slam event, which begins on July 2.

Source: AAP

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ATP Rankings: Rafael Nadal is No. 1, but for how much longer?

Rafael Nadal has held on to his No. 1 ranking after cruising to a record 11th French Open title on Sunday at Roland Garros. He sits barely ahead of No. 2 Roger Federer with a 100-point lead of 8,770 to 8,670.

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Alexander Zverev is No. 3, nearly 3,000 rankings points further back. Juan Martin del Potro jumped two spots to No. 4 by reaching his first French Open semifinal in nine years, and Thiem rose one place to No. 7 by reaching his first Grand Slam final.

If Federer reaches the final in Stuttgart, he will regain the No. 1 spot in the ATP Rankings on 18 June.

ATP rankings as of June 11:

# Name Nationality Points Tournaments
1. Nadal Rafael Spain 8770 14
2. Federer Roger Switzerland 8670 18
3. Zverev Alexander Germany 5965 23
4. Del Potro Juan-Martin Argentina 5080 19
5. Cilic Marin Croatia 4950 19
6. Dimitrov Grigor Bulgaria 4870 23
7. Thiem Dominic Austria 3835 26
8. Anderson Kevin South Africa 3635 21
9. Goffin David Belgium 3110 24
10. Isner John USA 3070 25

“Today is all about Roland Garros,” Rafa said after defeating Dominic Thiem 6-4, 6-3, 6-2 in Sunday’s final. “I don’t think about the rankings at all today, no?”

Rafael Nadal is now leading the ATP Race to London. He has 1545 points more than Alexander Zverev.

Source: ATP World Tour, AP, AFP

VIDEO: Rafael Nadal practices ahead of Roland Garros 2018 final with Dominic Thiem

Rafael Nadal was spotted on the practice courts at Roland Garros ahead of his final clash against Dominic Thiem. Vamos Rafa!

Roland Garros Final: What time does Rafael Nadal play against Dominic Thiem?

The final of the men’s singles tournament at Roland Garros 2018 between defending champion Rafael Nadal and Dominic Thiem will take place on Sunday on Court Philippe Chatrier at Stade Roland Garros.

Date: June 10, 2018

Match time: 3 PM local time / 9 AM EDT –  New York, Montreal / 2 PM BST – United Kingdom / 3 PM  CET – Spain, France, Germany, Italy / 11 PM AEDT – Melbourne. To convert to your local time, use this website.

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Rafa on playing Thiem:

He’s an amazing player. He beat me this year in Madrid. He has big power, he’s playing with big confidence. I know I have to play at my best. I believe I can be ready for that final. It’s going to be a tough one.

If I play well, I normally have my chances. If I don’t play well, it will be almost impossible, because I play against a player that’s going too well.

Thiem on playing Rafa:  Continue reading “Roland Garros Final: What time does Rafael Nadal play against Dominic Thiem?”

PHOTOS: Rafael Nadal beats Juan Martin del Potro to advance to 2018 French Open Final

Rafael Nadal is one win away from his 11th French Open championship after earning a 6-4, 6-1, 6-2 semifinal victory over Juan Martin del Potro on Friday at Stade Roland Garros in Paris. He beat the Argentine in just over two hours.

Rafa was in full control as Del Potro wilted under the relentless pressure of his whipping trademark forehand. Del Potro pulled up with a hip complaint as he trailed 2-1 in the first set, but despite clear discomfort he fought on to complete the match in two hours and 14 minutes.

After the match, Rafa said:

The first set was very difficult. Juan Martin had a lot of opportunities and I was a little bit lucky to win it. It’s incredible to play here. I feel very fortunate to play in front of this crowd. Without working hard and without going through tough moments and without still being focused on your passion of the game, it is impossible to be here. Still being here is something I never dreamed about.

Dominic Thiem is an amazing player. He beat me in Madrid this year and he has great power. I have to play my best. I have to improve a little bit. I believe I can be ready for that final. It’s going to be a tough one but I will fight all the way.

Rafa will face off with Austrian seventh seed Dominic Thiem on Sunday for the trophy. He has never fallen in a Roland Garros final. The left-hander is a perfect 10-0.

Source: AAP

Roland Garros SF: What time does Rafael Nadal play against Juan Martin del Potro?

Defending champion Rafael Nadal and Juan Martin del Potro face off in the semifinals of Roland Garros 2018 on Friday. The Argentine reached the semis in Paris for the first time since 2009 by beating Marin Cilic in four sets.

Our champ has never lost once advancing to the semi-finals at Roland Garros, lifting the Coupe des Mousquetaires on all 10 occasions.

Date: June 8, 2018

Match time: Not before  3.30 PM local time / 9.30 AM EDT –  New York, Montreal / 2.30 PM BST – United Kingdom / 3.30 PM  CET – Spain, France, Germany, Italy / 11.30 PM AEST – Melbourne. To convert to your local time, use this website.

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Rafa on playing Delpo:

He has fantastic potential. Aggressive game from the end of the court, the baseline.

And I have to play aggressively. If I play defensively and I don’t take intensity, I will lose.

Delpo on facing Rafa:

Tomorrow I will try to play a match as I did in a different surface against Rafa, but he’s lefty and what I say before my match against Ramos, a lefty player has advantage with me because he can find easily my backhand, and he knows what my backhand is at the moment.

But anyways, I will try to do my best, to play my best tennis, and see if I can do a good match.

While Rafa has a 9-5 lead against Del Potro in their ATP Head2Head series, the pair has met only twice before on clay courts. In their two completed red dirt matches, Rafa beat Del Potro 7-5, 6-3, 6-2 at the Paris major in 2007 and 1-6, 6-4, 6-1, 7-6(0) in the 2011 Davis Cup final. Rafa also won their last clash in the 2017 US Open semi-finals 4-6, 6-0, 6-3, 6-2.  Continue reading “Roland Garros SF: What time does Rafael Nadal play against Juan Martin del Potro?”

WATCH: Rafael Nadal’s top 5 shots from 2018 clay season

Take a few minutes and check out this compilation of great tennis shots from Rafael Nadal. Which of these is your favourite?