G.O.A.T, Roland-Garros, 21 majors, Carlos Moya: 10 questions about Rafael Nadal – updated after rib injury
Rafael Nadal is considered one of the greatest players in tennis history. Here are the answers to some questions you may have about the Spaniard
Is Rafael Nadal the Greatest of all Time (G.O.A.T.)?
Rafael Nadal has won 21 Grand Slam titles and many consider him to be among the greatest players of all time. The Spaniard won his 21st Grand Slam title in 2022 when he captured the Australian Open crown for the second time. For the first time, as of January 30th, 2022, Nadal has moved ahead of Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer and stands alone at the top of the all-time men’s singles Grand Slam titles list.
How did Nadal win the 2022 Australian Open?
The Spaniard defeated Daniil Medvedev to become the first man in history to win an Australian Open final from two sets down in the Open Era. The last time it happened in Melbourne was 1965, when Roy Emerson defeated Fred Stolle. With that victory Nadal became the first male player to win 21 Grand Slam titles, and for the first time he surpassed both Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic to lead the race for most Grand Slam men’s singles titles, all-time.
Is Rafael Nadal currently injured?
Yes. Nadal suffered a cracked rib when playing in the semi-finals of the BNP Paribas Open in March. He is expected to be out for between four and six weeks, meaning he will miss events in Monte-Carlo and Barcelona, and faces a race to be fit to play in Madrid and Rome before Roland-Garros.
Why is Rafael Nadal called the “King of Clay”?
Nadal is called the “King of Clay” because he has won the French Open a record 13 times. He has won more than 100 matches on the Parisian clay courts, only losing a grand total of three matches – against Robin Soderling in 2009 and Novak Djokovic in 2015 and in the semi-finals in 2021.
Between 2005 and 2007, the Spaniard won 81 matches in a row on clay, another all-time record.
Why did Rafael Nadal withdraw from Wimbledon, the Olympics and the US Open in 2021?
The Spaniard elected to skip Wimbledon and the Olympics in 2021 in order to rest and recuperate his left foot after a difficult clay court season. Nadal announced the news on June 17, 10 days before the commencement of main draw play at Wimbledon.
“The fact that there has only been two weeks between RG and Wimbledon didn’t make it easier on my body to recuperate after the always demanding clay court season,” Nadal said on Twitter. “They have been two months of great effort and the decision I take is focused looking at the mid and long term.”
It’s the fourth time – also 2004, 2009 and 2016 – that Nadal has missed Wimbledon since his first appearance in 2003.
On August 20, Nadal announced that his left foot injury needed more rest. He pulled out of the US Open and will not play any more events in 2021. On October 13, Nadal gave an update, saying he would take his time to come back in shape.
“Not everything depends on me, but I am confident that my daily efforts will pay off and allow me to return soon,” he said.
When will Nadal retire from tennis?
It isn’t clear. Nadal turned 35 at Roland-Garros (on June 3) but has shown no desire to end his illustrious career. His recent decision to skip Wimbledon and the Olympics (in 2021) is more about his desire to rest and recuperate in order to find his top form, than a signal that his career is nearing the end. He says he is confident that he will be back to his best in 2022.
How many titles has Rafael Nadal won?
Rafael Nadal has won 92 titles in his career, including three in 2022. His first came in Sopot in 2004 and his most recent win came in Acapulco in 2022.
When was Rafael Nadal born?
Rafael Nadal was born on June 3, 1986 in Manacor, on the island of Mallorca, Spain. He is 6ft 1in (1.85m) tall, according to his profile on ATP official website. He weighs 187 lbs (85 kgs).
Why does Rafael Nadal play left-handed?
Nadal is right-handed for most things in life, but plays tennis left-handed. When he was a child, the Spaniard hit with both hands on both sides, but hit harder on the left side. Seeing this, his uncle and coach, Toni Nadal encouraged him to play his forehand on the left side.
Who is Rafael Nadal’s coach?
Nadal’s current coach is Carlos Moya, a former Spanish player who won Roland-Garros in 1998 and was world No 1 in 1999. Moya joined Nadal’s team in December 2016 as co-coach, before becoming head coach in January 2018, following Toni Nadal’s departure from the main role. Rafael’s uncle wanted to devote himself entirely to his nephew’s academy. Rafael Nadal had been coached by his uncle since his tennis debut.
Last year, Toni Nadal took on a coaching role with Canadian Felix Auger-Aliassime.
Who are Rafael Nadal’s parents?
Nadal parents’ are Sebastian Nadal and Ana Maria Parera. Sebastian is a successful businessman in Manacor. He is the owner of Vidres Mallorca – an insurance, glass, and window company. Sebastian also owns a restaurant called Sa Punta.
Ana Maria was a trader who sold perfumes at the time of Rafael’s birth. She left her job and became a homemaker soon after the 20-time Grand Slam champion was born. Nadal’s uncle, Miguel Angel Nadal, played international football for Spain and was nicknamed “The Beast” for his physicality.
Who is Nadal’s wife?
Fifteen years into their relationship, Nadal married Maria Francisca “Xisca” Perello on October 19, 2019. The 33-year-old Spaniard was born on July 7, 1988 in Mallorca. Since 2012, Xisca Perello has been project director at the Rafael Nadal Foundation, which is dedicated to the education of children and their consistent practice of sport.
Who is Rafael Nadal’s agent?
Nadal’s agent is Carlos Costa, a former Spanish player, who was world No.10 in 1992.
When did Rafael Nadal start his career?
Rafael Nadal began his professional career in 2001 at age 15. That year, he got his first career win at an ATP Challenger tournament in Sevilla, against Israel Matos Gil, who was world No 751. The following year, in 2002, the Spaniard won his first ATP tour level match, defeating Ramos Delgado, ranked 81st in the world, in the Mallorca tournament first round and in the following round, he lost to Olivier Rochus.