Catching up

Photo by Beth Wilson

Photo by Beth Wilson

Big list of a bunch of crap and my report on today’s Rafa practice.

Round 3

Tuesday’s Q&A

Tuesday’s blog

3rd round presser on YouTube

3rd round photos

Wednesday’s Q&A

Wednesday’s blog

Round of 16 presser on YouTube.

R16 photos

Rosana reports on the R16 match

IB3 report on R16 match

Kia Commercial

Some sort of report on tummy taping (in Spanish)

Today’s practice:
I got to see a Rafa practice today! It was a very short one and not very intense. He was about a half hour late and his practice partner (who looked to be a junior) stood around waiting for him by the gate the whole time. Poor kid!

Right off the bat, Rafa started pointing to his shoes and he, Tuts and Maymo were talking about them. Tuts disappears while Rafa does his warm-up and starts to hit. After a bit, Tuts comes back with new shoes.

Not really a whole lot to say about the actual practice. It was very light – just groundies and volleys with no serves at all. He never cranked up his shots to match speed. I’m wondering if it was a light practice because of the late night before.

He looked to be in a good mood and, after done hitting, decided to try and toss his water bottle into the trash can. First, he had to get someone to take the lid off. Once they did, he sat in his chair, leaned back and tried to flip the bottle in the can. Nope. Someone fetched it for him and he tried again. Nope. Toni gave coaching advice. Rafa didn’t look like he cared. Toni tried – instead of flipping from an awkward sitting position, he stood and threw it like an American football: got it in one try. Rafa tried a few more and, I think, got one. Then, someone handed him another bottle…so he had to try with that a few more times. Once tired of that, they all got up and walked off the practice courts.

Here are a few quickly processed pics – I will post better versions when I get home.

X marks the spot
Tapping the tummy
Dealing with the sweat
Laughing at something on Costa’s phone
Bottle toss attempt one
That didn’t go very well
Team Nadal is leaving the building

29 Responses

  1. CC says:

    “It is 3.30 am here in NY…” “Maybe I will be able to sleep at 4…”

    Made me wonder what he did for that half hour? Or should I not…? ;)

      • CC says:

        Hah, sorry An! He probably just…brushed his teeth, no? But…mmm…my mind wanders sometimes. I can’t help it.

        • An says:

          No excuses. If my mind is on Rafa ( wich is app. 24 hours a day ) it wanders constantly ;)

        • Carol says:

          Maybe he raided the minibar ;-)) – for the Coke and crisps! Any other speculations are deep in my mind: LOL!!

          (Sorry Rafa, but can’t help myself…)

    • Carol says:

      Thank you, Miri. These photos are so spontantious and natural. (BTW – I think you are too hard on yourself over your photo quality :-))

      Hee, Hee: throw bottles, not racquets!! So good again to see a happy jokey Rafa. And he’s practical, using old kit for practice as ever…

      Oh and the Kia ad – (I assume this is the final cut – correct term?). Has Rafa ever looked hotter than when walking along that sunbaked road…? Hmmm…

  2. Atch2 says:

    Miri, great photos of relaxed Rafa and his team.

    Hey I also had another question answered from Sunday’s Q&A! Cheeky answer Rafa.
    Q: Have you ever played competitively against Uncle Toni? If so, who won and how old were you? Atch
    RN: No, never. Too easy :-)

    I want an Advantage Nadal T-shirt. Why don’t they make them in women’s size?

  3. mary says:

    I love the F*******g tummy tape vid. I totally cracked up. Imagines saying, “Hang on we will put tape here over belly button, now here around waist, upper chest, around neck”. Guy on bed responds, “But what about the lower abdomin?” “Nah,” comes the response, “thats not f*******g importanto”. What dorks!!!!!!!!!!! ;) ;)

    • Carol says:

      LOL – that guy looks so damned worried, I can’t help chuckling :-))) Na, na, na, na…how much further down will that tape go…?

      Glad its not me who has to have that lot ripped off – and he’s a pretty hairy bloke *ouch* ;-)

  4. mary says:

    Oh and just in case you didn’t read a post I added earlier, it was me on Wednesday’s Q&A’s. I think he realized it was said in jest & responded same. He is one funny, cute, adorable, hot matador. *Mmmmmmmmmmmmm faints*

  5. faeaki 7 says:

    These photos of Rafa are sublime! love the wot one the best, ah the hair the bod, *phew* gooorgeous Rafa… and the 1st bottle attempt, funny lol..

  6. Suzanne says:

    I think I’ll have to agree with Rafa about his favorite commercial/s being the “Timeforce” ads with Pau Gasol. Now those were hilarious and I think that even without understanding Spanish, you get the message. This Kia ad basically is just good because of the precious Rafa footage.

  7. rafafan1 says:

    Miri, thanks for these practice pix. Also I just got around to looking at your flicker folder from Montreal and wanted to download a few practice pix to do a collage but I wasn’t able to. Did you do something special there?

  8. yyytubik says:

    Hey Miri, great fotos and great blog! I have a question is it possible to post them on the fan forum? with all the rerences of course ;)

  9. Nada H. T says:

    Thank You miri for Rafa’s Great pics.

    They are Priceless :)

  10. Suzanne says:

    Rafa was just shown on CBS tv playing foosball in the players lounge while waiting out the rain. I can’t believe they are talking about putting on the Williams/Clijsters match first. What a bunch of bone-heads. Now, once again, Fed is sitting cozily in his hotel room rubbing his hands together in delight. Whose turn is it to massage his feet? I guess character is forged through adversity, and our Rafa has the most of any of these guys…

    • rafafan1 says:

      They just suspended play today so no tennis at all today. They didn’t provide any further info for tomorrow. Hate US Open and USTA. They suck big time. Poor Rafa (and Gonzo) has to hang around all day dealing with the frustration while the other 3 semi finalists get to have all the free time and plenty of rest going into the semi.

  11. An says:

    I just heard that, if they come to play at all, they put all 3 matches on court at the same time.
    Serena and Kim on Arthur Ashe
    Rafa an Gonzo at Louis Armstrong
    And the other womens semi on grandstand.

    If they wont be able to play today the mens final will be on Monday.

    • Ch F says:

      Oh, pretty wise decision, finally. I just don’t understand, do they have to spend the whole day there? It must be very frustrating-you’re not playing but you’re not really resting either…must be very frustrating. I know the delays break the rhythm but let’s hope it helps Rafa rest those abs a bit more. Fingers crossed!

  12. Atch2 says:

    Found vid of the bottle throwing adventure. Can’t believe 5 grown-up guys were figuring out the logistics of throwing an empty water bottle into a trash hole. Probably the only thing Rafa gave up on before succeeding at it.

    Rafadorable just the same.

    • miri says:

      Ha! That’s great. I couldn’t see the trash can and thought a few of the shots went in since I didn’t see the bottle bounce back. Love that Costa points out it’s impossible the way Rafa is trying it and Rafa’s like, I don’t care. I keep trying this way.

      • CC says:

        Heh, in his last attempt he’s still nowhere near being close to succeeding and he still looks like “Sheesh, that was close, no?”.

    • CC says:

      Thanks, Atch2, that’s Rafadorable indeed. And I adore Carlos Costa so much, he’s a hunk.
      Must watch again.

    • mary says:

      Thanks for link. Very funny indeed. I think Rafa’s most famous arse was super glued to the seat though. He obviously wasn’t that good at science. Like trying to put a square in a round hole. ;) :) Or is that a round object in a square hole? he, he!!
      I’m glad you’re sticking to tennis Rafa, now that you do know & well.