Toni takes on the French

Ana pointed out this article where Toni expresses his grumpiness towards the audience at Roland Garros. (Google Translation.)

Toni Nadal was very annoyed with the attitude that has taken the audience to Roland Garros with his nephew and disciple, Rafa Nadal. “The Parisian public is pretty stupid,” he said angrily.

Uncle Toni is grumpy!

38 Responses

  1. risha says:

    Uncle Toni does not approve.

  2. Josh says:

    I concur Toni, my man!

    I mean they were chearing Tommy Haas’ double faults today against Federer. It sickens me the extent to which they make it know they don’t like Rafa and want Fed to win :(

  3. rez says:

    thanks so much miri for this.

  4. Anna says:

    All of the options in the poll.

    As for the crowd, Pova gave them the right instructions to where to shove their allez.

    Will never watch this tournament again. DO NOT CARE if Rafa eventually wins it again. DO. NOT. CARE.

  5. vamsi says:

    french open is no french popen without rafa
    when u name the tournament rafa comes to mind
    it is not the same without him
    i dont know why they hate rafa
    if anyone owns the philip chatrier its him

  6. Trish says:

    I would be pissed too if I were Uncle Toni and I would be sad if I were Rafa. Terrible treatment for a Champion of their courts for four years!

    I dont really know what their problem is but I think that Toni is right that the French are just jealous of the success of Spanish players (and well — come on — additionally, the Spaniards are HOT!).

    • CC says:

      Hah, I like your last comment, Trish!

      As much as we love Rafa, though, we cannot expect him to be loved everywhere and I suppose a player has to deal with this as well… Doesn’t make me love him less!

      • Trish says:

        I would like to understand exactly what their objection is.

        I have a friend that is French and I posed the question to him to see if he can lend any insight as to why Rafa does not seem to have not won their hearts….

  7. miri says:

    I understand Toni and Co being pissed, but I’m not sure publicly calling a large group of people stupid is going to help.

    • CC says:

      Absolutely right, miri. I didn’t know whether to comment on this, am very suprised that Toni said this.

      • vamsi says:

        i agree that he was not absolutely right in saying that but anyone is bound to get angry
        look,nadal has been winning the roland garros for 4 yrs but amazingly he could not win french hearts
        he has played in various parts of the world against various opponents but was never disgraced by the crowd

      • rez says:

        same with me.

        • loverafa4ever says:

          its probably translated rong… I mean I dont think Toni will call the French Public stupid… It mst have been a different word translated rong…

          • nereis says:

            The translation is right BUT he said that after saying that he didn’t understand why Rafa’s trainings were the most crowded (asking autograph and photos) and later the same people behave like that when he was playing. It’s incomprehensible, he was refering to that.

            Maybe not the best choice of words, ok, but I still think he’s totally right. Facts are facts.

  8. tiemyshoe says:

    I don’t think “pretty stupid” was a great phrase coming from Toni, but Toni’s clearly pissed about how they’re treating Rafa. PISSED. So I don’t blame him.

    The French crowd sucks, but it’s no reason to not watch the tournament. It’s a part of the conditions, just like playing DC entails hostile crowds and playing AO entails ridiculous heat. Players just have to deal.

    • tiemyshoe says:

      No, I amend that – it sounds like I dislike the French crowd (or their boo-happy contingents, at least) much less than I do. The awful thing is that they’re operating on high levels of ethnocentrism, which is unpleasant to say the least. But if the crowd didn’t stop Rafa from winning four times, I don’t think they were that much of a factor this time. He simply had a bad day at the worst possible moment.

      • miri says:

        But if the crowd didn’t stop Rafa from winning four times, I don’t think they were that much of a factor this time. He simply had a bad day at the worst possible moment.

        I agree. Rafa’s played DC, he knows hostile crowds.

        And if the crowd ever does cause a player to lose, that’s the player’s fault. You can’t blame a loss on the crowd, the wind, the lack of light, etc. If those things affect your play, that’s on you.

      • CC says:

        Yeah, Rafa would not use the crowd as a reason for losing. Just as he never makes any other excuses, really. Not even the windy or the crazy bounce. :)

        • rez says:

          I guess we was just wishing to have more support in the tournament that he loves the most. He’s never been someone to blame his loss on these sort of things.

    • Anna says:

      “The French crowd sucks, but it’s no reason to not watch the tournament.”

      Actually, a person can choose to watch/not watch something or like/dislike something based on any arbitrary reason. A third party can judge their reason as stupid, but that’s neither here nor there.

      Right now, I’m hating RG like burning and feel like never watching the tournament’s transmission ever again. Irrational, but thankfully, I’m entitled. :)

      • tiemyshoe says:

        Of course you have the right, I wasn’t saying you don’t. And I’m not sure why my statement (or any statement to the contrary of Total Despair) has to be read as undercutting others’ right to feel how they feel. I definitely don’t intend to do that.

        I’m surprised that I’m still watching (GO MUZZ) – I kind of thought I’d give the rest of the tournie a pass. It’s totally masochistic, but there are still players left in the draw that I’m rooting for – like Monfils! He can beat Federer, y’all. Hope springs eternal.

        IMO, I steadfastly maintain that RG is still a beautiful tournament – one that Rafa has won four years running, where he has established himself as a great. And I’m sure he’ll be back. Borg lost at RG, too. Rafa’s too good, too strong, and too young not to have ample chances to match Borg’s record. This is a reminder of how fragile streaks and records are, and how remarkable Rafa’s four-year run was in the first place.

        • johanne says:

          Word. Rafa is just a baby in tennis years. He’s established himself as a champion YEARS ago. It’s truly remarkable to think about all he’s achieved so far. We are lucky to be able to follow his amazing careera (tee hee).

        • Anna says:

          Great attitude! Congrats! Can’t say I share it. Just looking at Lenglen and Chatrier right now is enough to break my heart – sadly, since I’d have loved to have watched Sori make her first GS quarterfinal. But good luck to Gael, anyway. And good luck to Andy. *Especially* to Andy. A Brit winning RG would be just – hilarious doesn’t quite cover it.

          • tiemyshoe says:

            What can I say, I just don’t want to be miserable over tennis. And am trying my hardest not to be. But still, I know how you feel.

            Gael rocked it today. Bambi-on-ice, but still. He was breaking easily – unlike Haas, who couldn’t get in on Fed’s serve unless Fed was messing up big time. Hope! Keep it alive.

  9. johanne says:

    I don’t think Rafa is saying the crowd made him lose…I mean he says “it was my fault” that he didn’t play well and was not really calm during the match. I think he’s just saying he’s disappointed/hurt/whatever that the crowd has never really embraced him AND would be so quick to cheer against him. That totally sucks! I would probably be like WTF too. To be fair, this isn’t anything new from the RG crowd – they are notoriously tough on players. OK, I can see how they’d “enjoy” getting on someone’s case who’s being a jackass on court. But what did Rafa ever do? OH wait, he “robbed” Federer of the title 4 years in a row. You know what? GOOD. I’m glad. And should he win this year, he’ll have done it without beating Rafa in final. Deep down, that makes me smile. ;)

    And I agree with Toni that it’s pretty bizarre that Rafa’s the most chased down player at the tourney, yet they’re against him on court. Why bother?

    I tell ya, it’s gonna be REALLY interesting to see what the crowd does with their beloved Federer when he plays Monfils. Monfils works the crowd like no other. He just finished putting on a show against Roddick. I will definitely be reading Andy’s presser.

    *Note: this rant may seem like I don’t enjoy the French. Not true. I adore France and French culture. I’m just making a general statement about the atmosphere of the RG crowd (which without a doubt includes people from all over the world). But the crowd seemed to take it to another level this year and I just find it really gross. Even just reading about what happen with Haas. Ugh. But, like many have said, sometimes the crowd just isn’t for ya. Sad it was that way with Rafa.

    • miri says:

      I don’t think Rafa is saying the crowd made him lose…I mean he says “it was my fault” that he didn’t play well and was not really calm during the match.

      I agree. I don’t think Rafa ever said this, but some people seem to be chatting about how the crowd might have negatively impacted his play.

      I tell ya, it’s gonna be REALLY interesting to see what the crowd does with their beloved Federer when he plays Monfils.

      Indeed.

  10. barroquisimo says:

    Sorry my bad english, I am spanish and I can say that hatred of the French by the Spaniards is nothing new.

    Jealousy is very bad, the French call our players “clay rats”, therefore the words of Toni still soft because of the situation.

    Jealousy is very bad…. Rafael Nadal, Juan C. Ferrero, Albert Costa, Carlos Moyá, Sergi Brugera, Arantxa Sanchez Vicario…. this is the problem of French public with the Spanish :D

    French suck my dick.

  11. barroquisimo says:

    Also say I read everyday this blog but I dont write because my english is really a pity :D

  12. Ch F says:

    http://sports.espn.go.com/sports/tennis/french09/news/story?id=4222472
    I’m posting this article. Too bad, if Toni really said this. Rafa is a great athlete and it wouldn’t be right for him if his uncle’s anger and frustration spoiled his image as a man of great sportivity. Although I totally understand how it must feel, I hope this doesn’t continue, Rafa’s team should be as elegant in defeat as it has been in victory. Rafa has been elegant so far, I hope his teams follows as well!

  13. eliza says:

    I have never really understood why the RG crowd can’t appreciate watching one of the greatest clay court players of all time. I mean, if they hate great clay court tennis so much, why don’t they switch to hard courts ffs? (Not that I’m suggesting that’s a good idea :))

    Federer always got plenty of support at Wimbledon through his dominating run. So did Sampras – I don’t think he was ever really widely loved, but the crowd gave him the respect he deserved. Not respecting your champion is just so incredibly bloody RUDE. Plus, this is a random irrational peeve but I’m always hearing about how much the RG crowds loved Kuerten because he’s such a lovely sweet guy and blah blah blah. I’m sure he is lovely, but SO IS RAFA!?! I do not get it at all. Frankly I think “stupid” is too nice. I would go for “unpleasant, petty and vindictive”.

  14. Mary says:

    The French are known to be rude in general. If you dont speak French the dont like you. Federer speaks French, so they like him. They were against Tommy Haas too last night when he was beating Fed…why? Because Tommy cant speak French…its as simple as that and teh French crowd are as fickle as that.

  15. nic says:

    I’m really worried the press are going to jump on this big time. And the French are gonna take this really personally. I really really hope this doesn’t get out of hand. I can see in Miri’s RSS feed at the bottom there were so many English websites with that quote from Toni. They’ve latched onto this news one day later, and seems to be spreading…

    I’m quite surprised Toni actually said that. He seemed pretty calm and ok when they interviewed him on French TV after Rafa lost. But when he returned to Spain, then he let fly. At least it’s not Rafa that said it, and most people who follow tennis know that Toni is an honourable good natured guy. Hhmm… I hope the French won’t take this out on Rafa the next time he’s back to Paris. Am also now thinking of the impending launch of Rafa’s campaign for Lanvin. French brand. Dunno…

    Praying for Rafa that this one just slips away quietly in the end. Am still really upset though at the way they treated him. No respect for the guy who has brought so much to RG. Rafa’s synonymous with RG. His name and RG always get mentioned together. One is not what it is without the other. Just a shame. Think no matter what, it’s only classy to give respect where respect’s due, especially to such a force on that court for the last 4 years. And one who is so humble and lovable. I’m quite happy that at least Uncle Toni kind of stood up for Rafa. He probably was so incensed about it, and sad to see his nephew so down, that he felt if Rafa couldn’t be the one to say it, he had to.

    Love to the Nadals xxx

  16. nic says:

    Hey just saw this article, think it’s a much better translation of what Toni said. It sounds more thoughtful than simply calling the crowd stupid. Hope this translation’s more accurate.
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/tennis/frenchopen/5424890/Rafael-Nadals-uncle-calls-Paris-fans-stupid.html

  17. Charles A. says:

    Oh, they will. They’ll take it out on Nadal, don’t doubt it. But after what they did on Sunday, what could be worse? Nadal’s play may not have been affected by it, but his heart and pride must have been. I say good for Toni Nadal, pretty brave of you, take it to them. If the French treated Federer the same way, I would respect them more – rooting against the top guys and for the underdog and so on. But the craven snobbery of prefering Federer, who looked like he wasn;t even trying in the 08 final, to Nadal is just part of the petite bourgeois conventional conformism. Nadal is a bit too wild and earnest and rugged for the preening French. Good luck to them.

  18. Jane says:

    At first I thought it was just that they were cheering the underdogs but after watching several matches it is definate the crowd were being disrespectful. Quite saddening and immature really.