Rafael Nadal

A forum to discuss all things Rafael Nadal, not relating to specific matches.

Nadal 5
Current tournament: Montreal

Next tournament: Cincinnati

Random GIF: rafa-nadal-dance-o
Video: Nadal cramps during Hamburg trophy ceremony

Recent quote: “Now the hard-court season is starting. It’s a different story. But at the same time, I’ll keep going with the same mentality and this (Hamburg) title helps to be a little bit more calm and add some points to my ranking to try to finish the year in the top 8 again.”

83 Comments on Rafael Nadal

  1. RC yeah all gravy, you sound like another poster named err Skeezer lol, the only thing i would like Rafa to win would be a WTF, other than that nothing else really, i think im getting ready for a change of favorite, but im yet to find one that im that emotionally invested in, its like i watch this or that player and yeah like him, but they dont make my heart race, and i dont chew off my nails watching them, although maybe thats a good thing, and it reuces my stress level ….

  2. Fedole fan i take on board what your saying, but if you dont at least give it a try, then you will never know, maybe some new ideas and impetus, and a fresh voice, might be just what Nadal needs, its early days yet, so im not about to write him off just yet, lets wait and see ….

  3. I say change is good but the way it happened also matters…I am worried about the way Toni parted from Rafa saying that he was not making decisions lately and that it was mostly Rafa’s father and Roig…this is very unsettling…hope Rafa is not dragged into some family disagreement as it will certainly harm his career going forward…Rafa has always had great respect and appreciation for his Uncle and Toni certainly deserves it… don’t think Toni leaving because he has not been heard is encouraging news for Rafans…

    It’s good to have Moya on board but unlike many of you here I don’t think Moya is a miracle worker…You all give too much credit to Moya for this AO success whereas I think Toni deserved credit as well.. if anything for pulling Rafa out of the competition before the WTF to work on his issues…
    Hope this all unfolds well for Rafa…Rafa cares for his family the most and if there is any niggle in this corner it is bad news for Rafa…

    • No one is taking any credit away from Uncle Toni or Rafa! But I think Moya certainly deserves some credit. I heard on ESPN how Moya shortened Rafa’s practices, how he had Rafa doing practIce drills with his forehand and how he would review tapes is Rafa’s opponents. They talked quite a bit about changes that were made. Rafa changing his ROS position against Raonic and playing to his forehand side more, were things that Moya would have known from being his coach.

      I really am not about to get into another debate about Uncle Toni again. I think that change is a good thing. I have given Uncle Toni all due credit for helping Rafa achieve what he has.

      I don’t know if we should read more into the comments from Uncle Toni. I am not about to jump to any conclusions about any family issues. Rafa is very close with his family and nothing can change that.

      It was a no-brained for Rafa and his team to pull the plug on his season. The wrist was acting up again and Rafa was being hampered in his matches. At that point so late in the tennis year, there wasn’t much to be gained by continuing to play.

      I am going to just watch how it all plays out with Rafa. But I think it is just as wrong to not give Moya any credit for Rafa’s great result at the AO, as to give Toni all the credit. Rafa has a team and they all play a part.

    • @ Alison Hodge 2:12pm,

      Agreed. There is plenty to be done during the year and both Toni and Moya will be around which is good for Rafa’s transition…

  4. I hope U Tony had had a chat with Rafa before making these comments out of the blue like this and not even to the Spanish press but in Italy… it gives a bad whiff if you ask me… If he hadn’t … were I Rafa, I’d be a little put off to say the least

  5. I don’t trust all these reports by the media. I do think the arrangement was agreed upon between Rafa and Toni, which may explain why Rafa took in Moya to be his coach since late last year. Toni was also coaching Christian Garin of Chile.

    I feel the only problem was that Toni made the announcement publicly without telling Rafa or his PR guy. This is not the first time Toni goes ahead to talk like this and it won’t be the last. Thankfully by next year, Toni may not have many chances to do so.

    • Mira Andi,

      Thanks so much for those links! I think the only aspect of this that surprises me is the fact that Uncle Toni spoke out before telling Rafa and the team. That is the thing that gives me pause. Otherwise, it appears that Toni has been hinting and telegraphing that he might step aside.

      The most important thing is that Rafa is healthy and happy and can work on improving his game and enjoy himself.

      • Nny…Yeah,when we first read those articles…1st thing that came to mind..”oh!he shouldn’t done that!he should discussed with the whole team first..if he feels that something is not right..discuss it in private..why the need to tell the world before u tell your nephew at least”…but,to do Uncle toni’s justice..i would like to think that he’s only human being..a person who also hurts by the turned of events this last couple of years…when rafa’s form dipped into the abyss the last 2 years,everyone quickly to put a blame on Uncle toni…and the famous JohnMac words..”Get a new damn coach”! in 2015 says a lot about what rafa fans and tennis supporter wants at that time..and to be honest,if we’re in uncle Toni’s shoe’s..we’re also get hurt by the blunt request,right?

        So,in a way i understand why Uncle Toni did what he did..bear so much pain can do that to u sometimes..at least i’d like to think that..As for rafa..maybe after knowing that uncle toni already made a decision to leave him at the end of the season..he can play freely..without have to think that he has a responsibility to make his uncle happy 24/7 anymore…we all know that rafa is a very nice young man..he would never ever hurt his uncle intentionally..and from the articles Uncle Toni seems clashed with someone on his team…so,maybe in some small way…the clashed of ideas affect rafa a little bit…who knows Nny…maybe…

        • Mira Andi

          You are very perceptive and thoughtful. I do agree that it had to be hard for Uncle Toni to hear JMac call for Rafa to get a new coach and all of the criticism that was directed at him. Unfortunately, that seems to be the way it goes when things are not working out with a player. I was also critical of Uncle Toni. We had some lively discussions here about it. Some of us did think that Rafa needed a change, at least maybe adding someone new to his team. I knew that Rafa would never let go of his Uncle as his coach. He is far too loyal and family means too much to him.

          But I can see how it would take a toll on Toni. He is only human. He did say that if people want to blame him for Rafa doing badly now, that he still should get the credit for helping him win 14 slams. Nobody wants to be second guessed over and over again.

          It sounds like Toni planned to step aside at some point anyway. Rafa said he wanted to be with his children. He also seems to want to work with young kids who are the future stars.

          All I hope is that things are good with Rafa and Toni. They should both be happy with this decision.

          • Nny…I agree with ALL u said…when rafa has been beaten non stop in 2015,it’s soooo painful to watch!And i’ve long for Uncle Toni to do something about it at that time…do something drastic to save rafa from experiencing any further losses and humiliation that certainly will damage his self belief and confidence even more…and honestly Nny..i think when rafa gave up a break in 5th sets at AO,his painful and humiliating losses that he suffered in the last 2 years played a big part in it…lost to the Fog USO 15,Pouille USO 16,Verdasco AO 15,all of it he lost when he’s on the break to win…

            It’s all between his ears Nny…and i regret very much that uncle toni as the sole charge of rafa let things get worsen for far too long..it’s clearly that it affected rafa..i can’t imagine Novak,Roger or Andy will wait till 2 years to find an answers to their critical problems!But at least now we have new hopes in Carlos…don’t know he can work magic on Rafa…but wait and hope we must!VAMOS RAFA!!!!

            • Mira Andi (AT 10:25 PM),

              U.Toni in his interview with COP, a radio network in Spain, in Dec.2015: “Getting injured in the AO 2014 final was a big blow. When he recovered [therapies helped him temporarily], the wrist issue happened [July 2014] and then appendicitis [Oct-Nov. 2014] when he was trying to come back. All this caused him a huge stress and lack of confidence in his body [in the 2015 season]. He was going on court [in 2015] without knowing/trusting what his body would do.”

            • augusta…Yeah…that too..we all know the string of injuries and bad luck that he suffered all through 2014 is the main factor why he suffered so many humiliating and painful losses but IMO…when you’ve kept been beaten over and over again,and almost all of them were very very tough lost…NO ONE will survive that kind of losses without suffered a trauma to their soul…they will scarred u…leave u with doubt and insecurity as well…every new and painful losses will creates a new doubt and i think it’s only because of rafa’s mental strength and endurance that he learned in his early years from Uncle Toni that prevent him to suffered more from this ordeal…i think,that’s why rafa still cannot get out from this problem totally even after 2 years…to endured a lack of belief in himself because of injuries is one thing but to deal with all the doubt due to a string of bad losses is another…

            • Mira Andi (AT 5:53 AM),

              Rafa got injured AGAIN (left wrist) in spring last year and it troubled him for the rest of the season.

  6. MiraAndy off topic, as im bursting to tell you this, i sent in a post to a certain Mr Hugh Jackman on FB, and he only went a replied to it, OMG i nearly passed out, (SIGH) faints practically hyperventilating, sorry had to come here to tell you, you must go and look 🙂 ….

    • Mira Andi,

      It’s such a pleasure to chat with you about Rafa! I especially appreciated your thoughts on what those tough losses did to his psyche. Really well said! Tennis players are human and not immune to doubts and anxiety when they start losing matches that they should win.

      I think for me one of the worst was the 2015 USO loss to Fognini. Rafa was up two sets and then ended up losing. He had never lost a slam match when being up two sets. That was painful to watch. When you start losing that way, then it can stay in your head.

      I am grateful that we can have such enjoyable discussions about Rafa!

      • Hey Nny!Morning to u!!I hope your day will full of joy and happiness Nny….It’s a pleasure to chat with u about rafa as well…we’re always on the same thought regarding rafa…Yeah,USO 15 also was one of the most painful losses for me too…it’s so hard to see him to be toyed like that..but then,i believe every downs then there’s an up…and i think rafa starting to get up again,we can see it the sign in Melbourne…that doesn’t mean there’s no rough patch for him…it will be but every win that he manage to bagged after this will make him more stronger mentally…and if Carlos can work something that can make rafa comfortable with it…he will be more calm and less anxiety on court..he trust carlos..and i think we’re going to see our Rafa of old appear more and more in the coming months Nny!..Hey Nny..it happens that Becker also agree with us!he he…


        • Mira Andi,

          Thanks for another great link! It’s nice to know that Boris Becker thinks that both Fed and Rafa have more to do in this sport!

          I hope that Moya will help Rafa if he should have doubts or anxiety. It’s good that Rafa has someone he knows well and trusts. That is very important to him.

          • Yeah Nny…And that is why Carlos has been chosen in the 1st place..he’s already an important figure in rafa’s life since his teenage life…and what’s more..the age difference between them is not so big..they’re more like brother’s,friends and not only coach-player relations…rafa can relate very well with carlos..and being younger than uncle Toni,surely carlos has a bunch of more creative and radical ideas than uncle Toni..

            We all know,as great as Uncle Toni’s are…his method and tactics are not working anymore…rafa can’t win slam with his defensive play…he don’t have that ability anymore…speed is not as it used to be,his legendary FH don’t have a fear factor anymore,serve?Well,you’re already know the answer..There’s so many things that rafa and Carlos needs to be doing..And honestly Nny i think Carlos will bring something to rafa’s game..I can’t wait to see how rafa’s going to respond on what they have been doing on practice to the real match…IW and clay season this year is going to be very very interesting Nny!WOOOOOHOOOOO!!!…VAMOS RAFA!!BRING IT ON!!!!

  7. Toni spoke to the Spanish media. Some excerpts from the article published in EL Espanol (translated by GSS):
    ¤¤ Every year it was more difficult for Toni to be away from his family. Now he has the chance to work at Rafa’s academy, while Rafa is in very good hands (Moya). Moya understands things well, it’s a good moment to leave, as his nephew will be in good hands and Toni’s decision won’t harm him.
    Toni had taken decision already before the AO. Both Rafa’s dad & Carlos Moya knew Toni’s decision. Rafa didn’t know because Toni didn’t tell him, he wanted Rafa to be focused on the AO.
    Toni will enjoy traveling this season and doesn’t discard to travel with Rafa sporadically in the future.¤¤

    • Thanks for this link. Clarifies a lot, especially if you read through the whole translation (Google in my case). Seems the journo put two separate issues together (Toni making fewer team decisions over the years and his decision to stop travelling with Rafa after this year) together as cause and effect when one had nothing to do with the other. You were right to caution us about this journalist!

  8. The ATP Staff: ¤¤ Toni Nadal: “Rafa Is In Good Hands.”
    “When we left Melbourne I didn’t say it to Rafael but I said goodbye to everybody because I knew it was my last time. I said goodbye to the driver, the person who always has looked after us there, the tournament director.”
    Toni said the decision was primarily related to the draining life of constant travel, the desire to spend more time with his family and also the excitement of having a permanent role at the academy in Manacor, where future tennis stars would be trained.
    “I have been thinking this thoroughly. It’s the right time to do it,” he said. “I know how old I am, the years and years I have been travelling around the world and the tension and stress that competition produces.
    “Now I am really excited to be in the academy. I step down, but [Rafael] is in good hands. Now I am going to make the most of this 2017.
    “It has been a very long journey, loads of seasons. If instead of my nephew, I had coached somebody else, I would have stepped down much earlier.”
    Toni said he would always be ready to give a hand when needed, even though Carlos Moyà and Francis Roig will now take the reins.
    “Let’s imagine a scenario where Moyà is not available in 2018 for a few tournaments. And my nephew asks me to help him,” Toni said. “I’ll do it for sure and I’ll enjoy it. My intention is to work at the academy and if they need me, I’ll be there.” ¤¤

  9. Just want to congratulate and thank Toni for dedicating 27 years to Rafa’s career making him one of the all time greats in tennis. I think he deserves to retire from travelling and work at Rafa’s academy. Without Toni, Rafa may have become a footballer and tennis would have lost the most charismatic player of all time.

    Vamos Rafa
    Vamos Uncle Toni

  10. Toni is an absolute legend. The most successful coach ever! doesn’t matter if there were some drawbacks. It is his last season and Moya is on board now. 2017 can be a good season for Rafa.

  11. It’s good for once to see Rafa resting when all his colleagues warm up their joints and skills everywhere…He himself usually playing 2 events somewhere to warm up for IW and Miami at this time in the past…BUT,i can’t help from thinking…IF only Rafa this WISER with his schedule from his early years,he maybe don’t suffered this much with injuries and maybe don’t have a crisis of confidence of the last 2 years that robbed his chance of winning multiple slams everywhere…Oh Uncle Toni..what have u done?

    One of key why Roger still ROCK!in his 30’s is that,he’s so smart with his schedule[not to mention his style of play that is sooo friendly to his body]..know when to play and when to take a rest..for how long and which tourney he should play..and the result…18th slam at the age of 35!!…OH!IF ONLY!..

  12. I do feel that Rafa, Djoko and Murray all have the abilities to play a different style than their so called ‘grinding’ style of play.

    Rafa could stick with his more offensive style of 2004 but worked on his serve and BH together with improved volleying and net rushing added in (he was already not afraid to approach the net back then in 2004).

    Djoko could carry on with his paint the line tennis even when he improved his fitness and also his net play.

    Murray with his deft touches and unique change of pace tennis should approach the net more instead of staying back at the baseline grinding to win points.

    If Fed could succeed playing his aggressive tennis, surely the trio could too given their talent. It’s interesting to note that Rafa first beat Fed at Miami 2004 playing offensive tennis, not defensive. Djoko had also shown us how good his offensive tennis was, at AO SF and Final in 2016. Murray too, at Shanghai 2010 beating Fed in the final, and at WTF final last year beating Djoko.

    Perhaps it’s all because of the courts being slowed down throughout the years forcing them to adapt and play a defense/offense style as they are so quick around the courts and are with amazing footwork, hence their incredible retrieving abilities.

    Fed OTOH being five to six years older won’t want to change the way he plays/ed since he had already won a lot playing his style of tennis.

    The trio may have to re-adapt if the surfaces are being quickened again, perhaps going back to their ‘original’ styles when they first started out?

  13. Rafa has arrived in Mexico. He makes a stop in Cozumel before heading to Acapulco. He is a part owner of two hotels in Cozumel (Secrets Aura Cozumel & Sunscape Sabor Cozumel) and has spent his holidays there, together with his family & girlfriend, several times.

  14. It will be interesting to see how Rafa handles the hot humid conditions in Alcapulco given some recent struggles in similar conditions.

    It will tell us a lot about where his game is.

    He mentioned having additional treatment on his wrist after Australia but I don’t recall seeing anything about it but perhaps I’ve forgotten.

    • If the man would wear a cap while playing it would help – Rafa still doesn’t have that much hair on top. But unless there’s a heat wave Acapulco should not be bad at all. It’s on the Pacific and it’ll be late February – early March.

      After AO Rafa mentioned the possibility of needing add’l treatment on his hand-wrist, but I haven’t seen anything more about it. Was not cited as a reason for passing on DC and Rotterdam.

      • Low 30s forecast. On court hotter. Sounds toasty to me Ramara plus humidity?

        If he is relaxed, I don’t think it will be a problem for him.

  15. Toni Nadal turned 56 today. EL PAIS published a great article about him.
    EL PAIS, February 19, 2017: ¤¤ Toni Nadal – a master of simplicity.
    Roig: “Rafa is an extraordinary competitor with incredible abilities, but Toni has managed to get the most out of it.”
    Roig: “When Rafa suffered anxiety 2 years ago, it was Toni who helped him the most to revert it.” ¤¤ (Translated by GSS)

    Vamos U.Toni!

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