Friday, 31 December 2010

Rafael Nadal reaches 5 million on FB

Courtesy: ATP


World No. 1 Rafael Nadal has reached another milestone by registering more than 5,000,000 fans on his official Facebook page.

The Spaniard uses his Facebook page to update his fans, in both Spanish and English, about his news on and off the court and to share photos and videos.

Nadal still has a little way to go before he catches up with rival Roger Federer, who has more than 5.6 million Facebook fans on his official page. Real Madrid footballer Cristiano Ronaldo sets the benchmark for athletes on Facebook with a staggering 17.2 million followers.

Former Manchester United midfielder David Beckham is approaching 6.8 million followers, while Nadal and Federer are closing on NBA star Kobe Bryant, who has just over 5.8 million fans.

Follow Nadal On Facebook

Rafael Nadal v Tomas Berdych - Video highlights

Highlights of the match. Look right at the end, shirtless Rafa.



Courtesy: vamosrafelnadal

Rafael Nadal v Tomas Berdych

Rafa has made it to the final of the exhibition series in Abu Dhabi. He beat World # 6 Tomas Berdych 6-4 6-4 and will play Roger in tomorrows final.

Here are a few photos from todays match.







Thursday, 30 December 2010

Rafael Nadal - Abu Dhabi tennis clinic & press conference video



Courtesy: meko1686 via Rafaholics

Rafael Nadal - Mallorca airport photos

We had the video now we have a few pictures




Rafael Nadal - Abu Dhabi interview

Courtesy: gulfnews 

World number one Rafael Nadal who is on the brink of completing a Grand Slam if he wins the Australian Open in three weeks' time termed 2010 as the most fantastic year of his career so far.

After rival Roger Federer won the Australian Open early this year, Nadal won the remaining three Grand Slam events — French Open, Wimbledon and US Open — and starts another year with the Abu Dhabi event.
Speaking to reporters Nadal said: "For me 2010 generally was the most fantastic year. I am going to have a lot of memories of the year".

The Spaniard said it was also a huge year emotionally after coming back from injuries. "The year was really an emotional year for me. It was not easy for me in 2009. Lot of problems… injuries. But during the year I came back and played the best tennis of my life and was fantastic to come back at the highest level and become a better player. It was unbelievable for me," he said.

Commenting on the prospect of winning in Australia to complete a Grand Slam, Nadal said: "For sure it's a special thing. For me it's an important one for sure.

"That's what is I'm going to try. Grand Slams are special tournaments but to win a tournament in Australia is great. One game at a time.

"I will arrive there to play my best tennis and best players of the world play there. The first round is going to be very. very difficult. Four (Grand Slam events) in a row and to win have the special motivation to play in all the Grand Slam events".

Nadal, who was beaten twice in the year-ending Masters event in London by Federer, said he had been trying to improve and add to his game.

"Everybody have to do it in general because improving your game… that's motivation.

"I have worked a lot on the slice shot and my positioning on court.

"Also on my backhand, my serve but the main thing is I have to win more matches.

"I have to gain confidence and this is important to win matches.

"It does not matter if you are a better player than before but if you player better on the important tournaments it is great.

"My second serve, I need to keep improving though that is not the worst thing of my game," said Nadal as he sets out to register a Grand Slam.

Nadal said winning here in Abu Dhabi at the start of the year boosted his confidence.

"This is the perfect place to start the season and if you play well against the best players its important thing for your confidence for the season ahead. This tournament does not affect the Roland Garros, Wimbledon or US Open for sure. But if you start playing well here it can affect a little bit on the next tournament in Doha and maybe in Australia," he said adding that his experience in Abu Dhabi over the past has been great.

Rafael Nadal - Abu Dhabi tennis clinic

A few photos from the tennis clinic Rafa held today in Abu Dhabi


Facebook update

Hola a todos! Hi Everyone. Ya estoy en Abu Dahbi y mañana juego el primer partido. I am already in Abu Dahbi and tomorrow I play my first match.

Courtesy: Facebook

Rafael Nadal - Abu Dhabi photos

Press conference photos from Abu Dhabi




Rafael Nadal - I can't ask for more than I received in 2010

Courtesy: xinhuanet

Spanish tennis ace Rafael Nadal said this Thursday that 2010 had probably been the best year of his career to date.

The player, ranked number one in the World, has just been named as the best sportsman of the year by French publication L' Equipe. It is a fair reward for a year which saw Nadal triumph in French Open before going on to win his second Wimbledon title and lift the U.S. Open for the first time in his career.

Nadal also won the Madrid Masters Series to become the player who has won the most Masters events in history.

"2010 has been the most emotional year in my career and the best in terms of results. I am very happy with the way things have gone and I can' t really ask for more," said Nadal in an interview with sports paper Diario AS this Thursday.

"The season is always very long and there is a lot of time to do things either well or badly, but I will start next year without too much pressure because things went so well in 2010. It will be difficult to repeat my results," he said.
Nadal has suffered knee problems in the last two seasons, but he believes that overall he has been lucky in terms of injuries.

"We can't fool ourselves, injury is a part of sport and although I have had moments when my condition has been a bit complicated, it has been much different to that of other players. I have been in the top two in the world for the past six years and that would not have been possible if I had not been in condition and had suffered long term injuries. I feel lucky," said a modest Nadal.

His wins in France, Wimbledon and the U.S. Open gave Nadal three out of four 'Grand Slam' titles, but he doesn't expect to claim all four in a single season.

"That is almost impossible, it is almost a utopia. It is very hard to win three in a year," he said, although if he wins January's Australian Open it would mean him winning four consecutive events.

"I have the chance to do that, but it is another Grand Slam. I think it is the only chance I will have to win the four titles consecutively and if I am going to do it, then this will have to be the time," concluded Nadal.

Rafael Nadal - El Pais Athlete of 2010

Courtesy: Official Website


Rafa Nadal wins 3 Grand Slams after suffering a knee injury – ‘Dedication, sportsmanship, hard work, will, humility, sacrifice, and discipline”, those are his values.

“I see a universal Spaniard”, said Julio Iglesias before triggering a huge round of applause. This beautiful phrase was spoken last Wednesday evening during a gala in Madrid at the ‘Palacio de Cibeles’, and it was referring to an incredible man, Rafa Nadal.

The Spanish tennis player won Roland Garros, Wimbledon and the US Open in 2010. He re-claimed the No.1 ranking and at 24, he became the youngest tennis player ever to win all Grand Slams. When we asked fellow sportsmen who they thought was the ‘Spaniard of the year’, they all chose Rafa Nadal.

During the last couple of weeks alone he has been honored by the BBC, and the ATP. But the interesting thing is, all of that success and accolades, all those celebrations and praise only cover a small percentage of his persona, the athlete. What truly makes Rafa and amazing man is what he does when he’s not winning, when his life has turned ugly.

During Julio Iglesias’ speech, at the gala organized by the Rafa Nadal foundation, a beautiful video of the world No.1 was showcased in huge screens for the evening’s special guests. From politicians, to fashion icons, sport stars and celebrities, they all stared intensely at the screen as the footage rarely showed Rafa’s victories, but instead, it focused on the challenges he has had to endure during his career. Multiple injuries, his quarterfinal loss against Robin Soderling at Roland Garros, his quarterfinal withdrawal at the 2010 Australian Open when he was playing against Andy Murray, the times when everything around him was full of doubts and no one believed he could win again.

Then it all turned into silence as the following words appeared; ‘Dedication, sportsmanship, hard work, will, humility, sacrifice, and discipline”. - True success doesn’t come from winning.
That was the message Rafa wanted to send.  Success comes from your values. They have helped him overcome his most difficult adversities and have played a key role in building a legendary career. Success, the world No.1 explained, doesn’t come in the shape of trophies; it comes from taking chances.

Behind each and every one of his biggest victories there has been a philosophical approach. The day he won his first Grand Slam (Roland Garros), instead of letting his new found fame and tennis status get to his head, he followed his coach (and uncle) Toni Nadal’s advice to practice first thing in the morning to go over everything he had done wrong and needed to improve.

From an early age, Rafa has been taught the art of appreciation, hard work, and humility. His coach and family have always reminded him that being good at playing tennis doesn’t make him a hero. “No, that is a term reserved for those who risk their lives in order to save others,” Uncle Toni once said. “Just because he can hit a yellow fluffy ball over a net well doesn’t make him any better than anyone else,” and he knows that.

It is perhaps that kind of upbringing that has allowed him to value the unique opportunity he has to help change other people’s lives. In 2009, Luzzi, an Italian player died of leukemia. “I spoke to Rafa”, said Paula, his mother. “about how we could help sick people like my son get looked after from home instead of the hospital.” “He kindly used his image to support the Foundation, donated one of his racquets for auction, and made a monetary contribution”. That’s where he started, and not long ago he opened up a school in Anantapur (India).

He has a huge challenge ahead of him in a few weeks, if he wins the Australian Open, he will become the first man since Rod Laver in 1969 to win all four Grand Slams in a row. But when talking to him, it’s clear the ‘Rafa Slam’ is not where his mind is. Right now, his goal is to continue his mission to teach others the values that have helped him become who he is today.

Rafael Nadal named top Sportsman

Courtesy: Yahoo

Rafael Nadal has been named sportsman of the year by world sports writers, after a ballot of 515 worldwide sports journalists.
Nadal became only the fourth man in the Open era to claim a Career Grand Slam - after triumphs in the French Open, Wimbledon, and the US Open in 2010 - and picked up 16 per cent of the vote.

Lionel Messi and Andres Iniesta finished second and third, respectively.

Croatian high jumper Blanka Vlasic picked up the women's award, ahead of skier Lindsey Vonn and tennis mum Kim Clijsters.

Vlasic, who was named IAAF World Athlete of the Year in 2010 and won the European Athlete of the Year trophy, won gold at both the World Indoor Championships and European Championships in the past 12 months.
She was also honoured by European sports writers earlier this year.

Spain were comfortable winners of the team of the year prize for their Fifa World Cup triumph in South Africa, claiming over 42 per-cent of the vote.

Canada's Winter Olympic winning hockey team claimed second while Brazil's volleyball team was third.

€1 million raised by Rafa & Roger in Madrid

Courtesy: deportes.es

Google translation

One million euros, a million dreams.

Exactly a week ago, Rafa Nadal and Roger Federer fought in the Magic Box in Madrid one of the most exciting matches of the season, the "Unite for Children, a charity whose funds were meeting for Rafa Nadal Foundation.

Today has been known that the figure collected that day was 1 million euros, an amount may increase in coming weeks as they are selling pieces of the track that was played.  For the first time in the history of tennis, fans can take home a piece of the surface on which the match was played.  Each piece will be kept in a perspex box and shall be signed by Rafael Nadal.  They can be purchased through the Foundation website http://www.fundacionrafanadal.com
 
They have raised funds through ticket sales and through the front row, anonymous donations, which increased the day 22 during the celebration of the match thanks to the collaboration calls made during the broadcast of TVE. "No said too to thank all the people who welcomed us and all persons, sponsors and partners that helped us take the project forward.  The Foundation will continue working and transmitting the values that led us to create, "says Rafa Nadal, a founding patron.  These are the three values that characterize the Spaniard and that he wants to convey to the smallest through the Foundation.
Rafa Nadal Foundation

Rafa Nadal Foundation was established in November 2007 with the aim of providing opportunities for children and adolescents with disabilities or from disadvantaged backgrounds.  Offers education programs and use of sport as a tool for personal and social integration.  "2010 was an important year for the Foundation. Earlier this year, we created the "More than just tennis" with Special Olympics Spain.  We recently signed an agreement for a major project of integration and SOS sport.  And just days ago, the Foundation visited India to open a school in Anantapur born through collaboration with the Fundación Vicente Ferrer, "said Claudia Blasi, Director General of the Foundation.

This school is part of the first project of international cooperation that have taken place.  Rafa had the opportunity to meet some of the children who will be trained in that school, and thanks to the Foundation may also receive psychosocial support, health and nutrition.  They, as the motto of the Foundation, will also have a chance.

Wednesday, 29 December 2010

Nice guys do finish first

Courtesy: thenational

For us misfits who tend to eyeball the peculiar area of life known as "professional tennis", the players' parents can become curiously familiar, like supporting actors in some eccentric drama.

Those are the devoted Williamses right there, and of course over there would be the Federers, and that man with the T-shirt with the likeness of his son so gigantic that it might scare you if you woke up and saw it amid the night would be Mr Djokovic, unmistakably.

The singular woman sitting studiously over there, the tennis professor who just loathes it when people feel the urge to commit chitchat during matches?

That would be Judy Murray, mother and first coach of Andy.

Even in this unique front-rows tapestry, though, some parents remain usually absent for a range of good human reasons, as with Pete Sampras or Lindsay Davenport or the No 1 kingpin, just now alighting in Abu Dhabi after a colossal Year 2010, Rafael Nadal.

We do not know Nadal's parents, but somehow, we do know something paramount about his parents. We know they were, are, must be, excellent.

We know this because amid a sporting planet so deserving of cynicism, so laced with wince-worthy opportunism, they unwittingly sent a son from the Spanish island of Mallorca out into global fame armed with a heaping dose of - dare we say in the 21st century? - good manners.

Nadal's good manners might not bear the effete courtliness the phrase might suggest, but they are deep and consistent and appealing and part of this funny little puzzle about the 24-year-old sportsman: on the court opposite his brutalising game that earns rote boxing comparisons, opponents suffer a form of suffocation until yearning "to go in the locker room and just want him to go away", as the American TV analyst and former pro Luke Jensen once put it.

And off the court? What fine company.

From the moment he won the 2005 French Open at 19 and emphasised that it should not change him, he has sprinkled across the years a fundamental decency that might go occluded given the big game, big hair and big muscles. In the third round of Wimbledon in 2006, with his grass-court prowess still unestablished at 20, he defeated Andre Agassi in three sets as the latter bowed in four directions to say a final farewell, whereupon Nadal supplied a peek into his own considerate sense of place.

When a reporter noted Nadal's muted joy during an important match against a renowned champion, Nadal said, "Yeah, sure, is not my day, no? Today I play my best match, but is not my day for have a good celebration, no? Is his day."

An American writer likes to tell of when Nadal's representatives invited to his Wimbledon digs some American reporters for a get-to-know-you. The champion greeted the guests, ensured everyone had a seat and then plopped himself in their midst … on the floor.

If you bother to look, his way has sustained itself through all subsequent hosannas.

Say you happened to follow him out of the 2009 French Open when, after four consecutive French Open titles, Nadal had just sustained a jolting, shocking, fourth-round loss to Robin Soderling, Nadal's first loss on the red soil of Roland Garros.

Well, your path following him off his cherished grounds one Sunday too early would have been halting, because he had to stop, hug goodbye and thank all the attendants working the tournament from behind the counters.

After a while of this kind of thing, it comes as unsurprising that you can start chatting with a fireman from Mallorca at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, bring up Nadal and learn that, sure, sometimes one can see him down by the water, sitting around, hanging out with old friends.

After he lost the 2008 US Open semi-final to Murray, again postponing his most elusive major, he finished his press conference, reached the hallway, grinned and hopped playfully upon the back of his physiotherapist, Rafael Maymo. You might think he had just won.

His insistent respect for every opponent, even those clearly about to undergo a profound pelting, always seems curiously sincere even if logically irrational.

His failure to revel in his own majesty seems to show in how he greets grand-slam titles, by falling supine as if half-bewildered when everyone else saw doubtlessness.

Study enough of this, and you can reach an odd conclusion. In this strange tennis universe with its omnipresent parents, you might think that though you don't know these parents, his reflection of them evinces that they must be people you would like to know.

Rafael Nadal leaving for Abu Dhabi

Short video footage of Rafa at the airport on his way to Abu Dhabi.



Courtesy: gandaines

Abu Dhabi - Mubadala World Tennis Championship

The Mubadala World Tennis Championship is one of the region’s most eagerly anticipated sporting events which will bring six of the world’s top tennis players to the Abu Dhabi International Tennis Complex in Zayed Sports City for three days of thrilling action to entertain the entire family over the new year.

The Players


The global tennis season starts here with true legends of the game competing for top honours and USD $250,000 prize money that includes current World #1 and defending champion Rafael Nadal along with 16-time grand slam winner and World #2 Roger Federer, as well as last year’s finalist Robin Soderling, the excitable Jo-Wilfried Tsonga from France, fast charging Tomas Berdych from the Czech Republic and rounded out with Cyprus’ Marcos Baghdatis.

Alongside the stars competing this year at the three day event, the Mubadala World Tennis Championship will feature a multitude of other attractions including a unique spectator village full of interactive components and family-friendly areas to engage and entertain visitors.

Through community engagement programs like the Mubadala Community Cup and the Mubadala Tennis In Schools Program, the event is quickly positioning itself as an event ‘where something is always happening’ on the UAE event calendar as it works to raise awareness of the benefits of tennis and the importance of living an active healthy lifestyle, whilst leaving a legacy for the community beyond the tournament.

The Format

Six of the world’s top men’s players will compete in a single elimination series of matches with Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer being granted the top two seeds and therefore being given a bye from Thursday’s first day matches (30th December 2010). Semi-Final matches will take place on day 2 with the final and consolation (3rd & 4th place) matches taking place on Saturday 1st January 2011.

The Venue

Abu Dhabi International Tennis Complex
at Zayed Sports City

Tuesday, 28 December 2010

Rafael Nadal - 2011 season begins - UPDATED

Once again our friends at IB3 have come up with the Rafa goods.



Courtesy: vamosrafelnadal

A Google translation of the subtitles during the video tells us that all good things have come to an end and the holidays for Rafa are over but it will not be long until we see him again in Abu Dhabi.

Rafa then says that he has always liked this time, time to spend with his family and friends but now the pressure starts for the next trip.

Rafa will start packing for the his trip tomorrow to Abu Dhabi and will then go to Qatar where he will play the first ATP tournament of the season in Doha.

It will then be off to Australia, where Rafa says "as always, every game will be very complicated".

The next 2 paragraphs made no sense at all, LOL.

At the end we see 2 of Toni's children, Juan & Toni. Juan mentions that he would like to one day win Wimbledon.

Monday, 27 December 2010

Rafael Nadal's feats are the year's best

Everything was better in the past. The statement can’t be true, but somehow it makes us feel better to believe it. And few people like to believe it as much as tennis fans. Wood racquets, slice backhands, serve-and-volleyers, even the profane bad boys and patchy Wimbledon grass of the 1970s — we long for all of it.

But if there was ever a time to put nostalgia aside and focus on the here and now, this is it. The pro game, and in particular the men’s pro game, is in the midst of what might be called the Extraordinary Age. From winning streaks to Channel Slams to majors collected to aces hit to hours played: What seemed unimaginable a few years ago has become routine. Who would have believed at the start of the last decade, when there was little order at the top of the ATP tour rankings, that over the course of five years two men would win 21 of 23 majors and hold the No. 1 and 2 positions for longer than any other duo in history? That one of them would own a record 16 majors while the other would win a record 93 straight matches on clay? And that they would each have earned a career Grand Slam, something that had previously been accomplished by just five other men?

Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer have lifted the sport in unique and very different ways — Federer with his artistry and elegance, Nadal with his passion and athleticism. In 2010, the sense of the extraordinary that they’ve created became contagious. At 28, Serena Williams continued her climb through the game’s historical stratosphere. She won her 12th and 13th majors, at the Australian Open and Wimbledon, respectively, which sent her past Billie Jean King on the all-time Slam list. But it was two less-than-legendary figures who gave us the most mind-boggling day of the season. Three days, actually: That’s how long it took John Isner and Nicolas Mahut to play their second-round match at Wimbledon. The two slugged serves at each other for 11 hours, 5 minutes, and 183 games; the fifth set alone lasted longer than any match in history. Pity the Frenchman: Mahut won more points in one match than anyone ever has—502 to Isner’s 478—but still took a loss.

That indelible 11-hour moment aside, the story of 2010 was the resurgence and eventual dominance of Rafael Nadal. The Spaniard had finished the 2009 ATP season at a personal and professional low point. After enduring multiple injuries and family problems, he’d lost all six sets he played at the ATP World Tour Finals in London. By March of 2010, though, there were signs of life in his beat-up body; he reached the semifinals in both Indian Wells and Key Biscayne. The dam finally burst in May, on the clay of Monte Carlo, where he stampeded through the draw to win his first tournament in 11 months. After the final point, Nadal dropped to the court in tears. He had the winning feeling back, and he wouldn’t let it go.

From that point through the U.S. Open, Nadal put on one of the great sustained performances in tennis history. He reclaimed the French Open without dropping a set, made quick work of Tomas Berdych in the Wimbledon final, and, serving more effectively than ever, surrendered just one set on the way to his first U.S. Open title.

Few top players have remained as committed to improving as Nadal. The former dyed-in-the-wool dirt-baller has moved up in the court, made himself a credible volleyer, and turned his serve into a bail-out weapon. Yet the 24-year-old has also retained the fearsome desire and competitive intelligence that have defined him since he was a teenager. Is Nadal the next Federer? It’s too early to say, of course, and if we’ve learned anything about their rivalry, it’s that whoever is being counted out is the person we should be watching.

For now, we’re watching Nadal. When asked about the future, the Spaniard’s characteristic reply is, “We gonna see, no?” We’re gonna see more Rafa, which is the best part of this story. The Extraordinary Age may just be getting started.

Courtesy: nbcsports

IB3 Rafael Nadal Special - Part 3

Here is the final part of the IB3 special that was aired on 26/12/2010



Courtesy: vamosrafelnadal

Rafael Nadal voted 2nd in USSA Athlete of the Year

David Villa of Spain and Kim Yu-Na of South Korea have been named the United States Sports Academy's 2010 Male and Female Athletes of the Year.

Villa scored five goals in helping Spain to its first FIFA World Cup title, while Kim won the women's singles gold medal at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver. Each beat out a field of 11 other candidates.

Tennis stars Rafael Nadal and Kim Clijsters finished second in the worldwide fan voting, which was available on usatoday.com and nbcsports.com.

Boxer Manny Pacquiao of the Philippines, the Academy?s 2009 Male Athlete of the Year, placed third in the men's category after becoming the first boxer in history to win 10 world championship belts in eight weight classes.

The Athlete of the Year ballot is the culmination of the USSA's yearlong Athlete of the Month program, which recognizes the accomplishments of men and women in sports around the globe. The Athlete of the Month is selected by an international voting committee comprised of media members and representatives of sports organizations and governing bodies.

The United States Sports Academy is an independent special mission sports university created to serve the world with programs in instruction, research and service. The role of the Academy is to prepare men and women for careers in the profession of sports.

Courtesy: USAToday

IB3 Rafael Nadal Special - Part 2

Here is part 2 of the IB3 programme aired on 26/12/2010



Courtesy: vamosrafelnadal

IB3 Rafael Nadal Special

Here is Part 1 of the tv programme aired on IB3 in Mallorca on 26/12/2010.



Courtesy: vamosrafelnadal

Sunday, 26 December 2010

Rafael Nadal - Spanish athlete of the Decade

A poll by the Spanish newspaper Marca shows just how much the Spanish public love Rafa. The poll has attracted over 50000 votes and over 31000 of those votes have been for Rafa.

It looks like you can still vote here

Here is the translated article from Marca.com

Rafa Nadal is for an overwhelming majority of users MARCA.com the Spanish athlete of the decade draws to a close. Over 50% of the votes collected by this site point to the player ahead of Spaniard Pau Gasol, Fernando Alonso, among others.

In the survey MARCA.com , which involved more than 50,000 Internet users, Nadal almost 20,000 votes ahead of his nearest rival, Pau Gasol. The Lakers player adds about 7,000 votes while Fernando Alonso, third, accumulated nearly 6,000.

The two players in the Spanish football team proposed as athletes of the decade, Iker Casillas and Xavi Hernandez, rank fourth and fifth respectively, but almost equally between them. Just a 0.1% separate the two players.

The survey on foreign sportsman of the decade of leading the great rival Rafael Nadal over the years: Roger Federer. The Swiss tennis player, with almost 30% of the vote, ahead of Valentino Rossi, Zinedine Zidane and Leo Messi, who around 15% each. Surprisingly or Michael Phelps or Usain Bolt, both with 6% of votes, the top appear.

Nike Advert in English

Here is the new Rafa Nike advert with English subtitles.



Courtesy: alosquedudan

Australian Open kit

A few more pics of the kit Rafa will be wearing at the upcoming Australian Open.





Saturday, 25 December 2010

Rafael Nadal - His Year In Review 2010 - Part 2



Courtesy: TheRafaelnadalchannel

Rafael Nadal - His Year In Review 2010 - Part 1



Courtesy: TheRafaelnadalchannel

Rafael Nadal Interview with Swiss press

Interview with Rafael from Blick, a Swiss newspaper

Rafael Nadal, you are very popular in Switzerland. It's a pity that you don't play here usually. Why not more often?

Rafael Nadal: It is my first match here against Roger but I played in Basel in 2003 and 2004. I lost both times in the first round. You never know: Maybe I will be here again in the future. It is really exciting to play against Roger in his homecountry - especially for charity. That's the most important.

Have you ever been in Switzerland on vacation? Can you ski or snowboarding?

No, I have never been to Switzerland to take a rest. I don't have that much free time and when you are from Mallorca it is difficult to get enthusiastic about another holiday resort. When I have retired one day I have to try to go skiing even though I will be really bad in it.

You are going to play these two exhibition matches after a long season. Do you still have - or already again - energy?

I started practicing 13 days ago. So for me it is a part of the preparation for the next season. It's true that I didn't had that much vacation this year. But when I started to talk with Roger about this idea we both immediately agreed. It would be stupid to use tiredness as an excuse for these events.

You help disadvantaged and handicapped people with your foundation. What do you learn from encounters with them?

That all help of the world is still too less. We live in privileged countries and are privileged people. I would feel bad if I wouldn't help. I learn from those encounters - especially a few months ago in India - that they have nothing bot are happy nevertheless. I was very impressed about this. But I want to make them more happy.

Do you feel a pang of conscience because you earn so much money and live a luxury life?

When you have been to countries like India you don't give much on luxury, hotels and glamour. That's for sure. But those things have never been important for me before as well. I try to live a normal life.

When you talk about a normal life: Do you have attendants in Mallorca or do you go grocery shoppping alone?

Honestly said: I'm only one of many in Mallorca. And I like this. I live a normal life, have the same friends and not much has changed. Therefore I like to go home after tournaments. It's the perfect place to live. When someone is looking for me in Mallorca he will find me there. And that's the same for the rest of the world. I'm a 24 years old man who plays tennis, nothing more.

Do you notice that you are well received at press conferences with this attitude?

The only thing I want is to stay loyal to myself. I want to be myself. As normal as possible. I don't want to get well received by anyone on purpose. What I say is what I think. Nobody is telling me what I have to say on a pressconference. I'm normal and honest. That's what gets you closer to the people.

2010 has been your most successful season. You even played convincingly at the World Tour Finals. Have you learned from Roger Federer to schedule your year better, to make more rests and to skip the Davis Cup?

I learned a lot from Roger during my career, without a doubt. But in this case it was my body who taught me the lesson.

Many think that you can be able as the first player since Rod Laver to win the Grand Slam. Who or what can prevent you from this?

You have to make clear to the people that you don't win Grand Slams that easily. Every major tournament is a strenuous effort. The US Open in New York are the most difficult one for me. That won't be different in 2011. The conditions with the surface are quite complicated for my game. Honestly said I don't like to talk about that I aim for the Grand Slam. I live with the pressure but I do realize that such a feat is nearly impossible.

Are you at the peak of your career? It would be frightening if you could get any better.

I don't know. I feel great and had an incredible year. To be honest, I don't know if I will be able to repeat it.

For many people you are already a living legend. Some compare you with Roger Federer and say that you will become the best player in the history one day. Does this make you proud?

No, no. The numbers speak a clear language. It would be stupidity to say I would be better than Roger or that I could compare with him. He has 16 Grand Slam titles and I have 9.

But are his numbers reachable for you?

At the moment it's too far away to think about it. I just want to get better all the time. Roger has been a role model for me because he improved his tennis over the years all the time. He never stood stil even though he is meanwhile 29 years old. I don't know where I will be at this age.

You are very modest and don't like it to compared with legends. Why?

Of course you like to hear it to be compared with the big players. But I have to take my racket and to prove myself all the time. Compared can be later on.

You and Roger are different characters. Does something combine you beside tennis? Are you friends or mostly brand colleagues and rivals?

There is a certain language barrier between us which is difficult to bridge. You just have to look at the video in which we promote the exhibition matches. We couldn't stop laughing. Once he hears Spanish it's over with him. Roger has always been good to me and I whink what's happening with us and what we managed to do is fantastic for the sport. Tennis has definitely profited because we are there.

Does the rivalry after a close match continue into the locker room?

No. The rivalry is just on the court. We both want to win. But when the match is over it would be absurd to have a bad relationship.

Courtesy: Blick

Christmas Facebook message from Rafa

Feliz Navidad!!! Merry Christmas!!!! Joyeux Noel!!!!

And may I add my message of a Merry Christmas to Rafa, everyone who visits this blog and to all my family & friends.

I hope you all have a wonderful day

xx

Friday, 24 December 2010

Rafael Nadal - Nike advert

New Nike ad with Rafa, Iniesta & Gasol encouraging all Spaniards to "shine, shine for their Country"



Courtesy: libertaddigitaltv

Rafael Nadal - Red Carpet Walk

The Red carpet walk before Rafa's Gala. If the video will not play try watching in IE and turn off your pop-up blocker. If that still fails click the Courtesy link below.




Courtesy: ondacero

Roger Federer - Rafa's big brother?

Nice article that discusses the relationship between Rafa & Roger.

Apparently tennis star Roger Federer isn’t above picking up his buddies from the airport — or his biggest rival, either.

Rafael Nadal, the world’s top-ranked tennis player, flew in to Federer’s native Switzerland this week for an exhibition match, and Federer met his longtime rival on the airport runway.

The two hopped into Federer’s car and drove together to Zurich for the charity match, according to a Yahoo Sports report.

It’s stories like this that remind me how different tennis is from other sports. Or maybe it’s just Roger and Rafa who are different.

I mean, can you imagine Tiger Woods picking Phil Mickelson up at the airport and driving him to a charity tournament? If they ever tried it, Tiger’s SUV might end up hitting another fire hydrant.

But somehow — as fierce as their matches are on court — Nadal and Federer have always maintained a healthy respect for each other.

It’s come to seem almost like a big brother, little brother relationship — highlighted by Federer’s comment after their second exhibition match, which took place in Nadal’s native Spain.

Nadal said Federer was generous to play a charity match with him in Spain, and Federer responded that it’s wonderful Nadal supports charities “at such a young age.”

Nadal is less than five years younger than Federer.

The Swiss star has clearly taken a “big brother” role to Nadal. He sets the marks on-court for “little brother” to chase.

And off the court, the two share a friendship that’s rare — and refreshing — between major rivals.

But that off-court cordiality makes their on-court rivalry all the more interesting.

Just more proof that friendly rivalries don’t have to be boring ones.

Courtesy: Jacksonville.com

Rafael Nadal - The Christmas Card

Nice short video of Rafa made into Christmas cards.



Courtesy: ksyuzi

Thursday, 23 December 2010

Rafael Nadal - Facebook update

Short update from Rafa.

MUCHAS GRACIAS!!!! THANKS A LOT!!!!!

Fue fantastico ayer ven tanta gente, tanto apoyo.  Gracias a ROGER en especial tambien

It was great to see so many people, so much help.  Special thanks to ROGER!!!!!!!


Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer & Julio Iglesias


Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer & the Disney Gang

Whilst I have already posted a video of the after match ceremony this one has English commentary & if you fast forward to 08.27 you get to watch Mickey Mouse and his gang come onto court and greet the players :)



Courtesy: milk8812

Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer & the kids clinic

Short video of Rafa & Roger having their photo taken with the kids after they held a tennis clinic prior to the Madrid charity match.



Courtesy: efe

Foundation match reports

Nadal beats Federer at Tennis Exhibition Match at Caja Magica in Madrid - ‘Joining Forces for the benefit of Children’

Yesterday in Zurich, it was Roger Federer who defeated Rafael Nadal but today in Madrid it was a different story.

The world number 1 beat Federer 7-6 4-6 6-1 in Madrid during the exhibition tennis match called ‘Joining Forces for the benefit of Children’ to raise funds in favour of the Rafa Nadal Foundation.

The money they raised at the Caja Magica will go to help children with disabilities as well as those who come from disadvantaged communities.

“To me, today is a very special day. I am lucky enough to be able to do what I love to do which is to play tennis, but at the same time, through my Foundation, I get the opportunity to help hundreds of kids who are not as lucky.”. Said Nadal before the match.

“I want to thank Roger, the people who have come out to see us, and our sponsors for allowing us to make this project a reality,” said the Spaniard.

“I want to thank David Bisbal for his help and for joining us in such a special day. I’m sure the crowd will really enjoy his music,” he added.

After the match,Nadal and Federer will attend the ‘Galería de Cristales del Ayuntamiento de Madrid’ for a gala dinner which will close out a two-day charity. This social event will be attended by elite sport stars, fashion icons and other famous Spanish personalities who will be treated to a private concert by Julio Iglesias.

“I give my most sincere thanks to Julio for making such a long trip to be with us. I’ve always been a fan of his and for me and my Foundation, it is an honour to have one of the biggest international artists participating at this charity event,” continued the Spaniard.

Today, Nadal was in danger of seeing history repeat itself when he surrendered the second set, like he did yesterday, but he battled back with two breaks in the third.

After trading breaks to start the match, the set headed to a tie-break after Federer faced down three break points at 4-all and Nadal saved a set point in the next game. Rafa took the mini-break to go up 3-1 in the tie-break and sealed the set with an ace.

Federer secured the only service break in the fifth game of the second set, but Nadal quickly took control in the third, racing out to a 3-0 lead. He converted on double break point opportunity to go up 5-1.

Nadal sealed the win with a powerfully angled forehand crosscourt shot.

Nadal says Federer’s “gesture to play a game here to raise funds for needy people is incredibly generous.”

Federer responded by saying it is wonderful that Nadal supports charities “at such a young age.”

“I just can say thank you very much to Roger to come here to Madrid and support my Foundation today,” said Nadal. “I did yesterday, and both of us are very happy that we can finally have this event and raise a lot of money for these kids. I know with what we’re going to raise yesterday and today, it’s not going to be decisive for that, but it will be a help and if everybody is convinced that everybody can help, it’s going to be important to improve a little bit this world.”
 
Courtesy: menstennisblog

Rafael Nadal & Roger Federer - Gala photos

Here are a few pictures from the Charity Gala at Cibeles Palace.




Rafael Nadal & Roger Federer - On Court Ceremony

Here is the post match ceremony after the Foundation match in Madrid.



Courtesy: vamosrafelnadal

Wednesday, 22 December 2010