Abu Dhabi final photos

Photos by REUTERS/Karl Jeffs and AP Photo/Nousha Salimi

72 Responses

  1. Stf says:

    Oh, we’ve waited so long for this last picture!

  2. Dolcefuga says:

    Yay! At last, the bad spell has been broken and I also got to see the match on the internet. Congrats Rafa, also loving the all white jacket outfit at ceremony.

  3. 40love says:

    Rafa s working his way back to championship form. Winning is sweet!

  4. ZARA says:

    Well done Rafa….
    Way to go….
    Good start for you….
    May this 2010 brings you back to the pinnacle of your career and increase your Grand Slam hauls….
    Prove the critics wrong this year…
    VAMOS…..

  5. sia says:

    Could he look any sweeter with that trophy … love to see happy, healthy Rafa again.

  6. Natalia says:

    oh, my god, I’m sooooo happy!! I see Rafa with trophy, I’ll cry now : )

    thanks Miri, for sharing tweets on Twitter, and for pics and for everything :)

    Happy New Year to you, people! :)

  7. Rafangel says:

    Oh, HOW long have we waited for the last three pics?! Maybe he won’t be retiring just yet, doubters ;)

    What is going on with Rafa’s shorts in pic 6?

  8. Emma says:

    Love the last pic with the customary bite of the trophy – my cable provider didn’t show the presentation in its entirety and so I didn’t get to catch that bite on TV. So I wasn’t sure if he did indeed take that bite in the end. Glad he did! And doesn’t he look happy and over the moon?

  9. Nic says:

    oh wow is it just me or is rafa looking as handsome and beautiful as ever in these pics? he’s just got a glow about him. and the short hair is looking great in this tourney. also, he looks so regal in all white. i love it. sorry to harp on the looks, but we all know how amazing this win is. i just want to revel in his awesomeness in these pics just for this post. sigh.

    • Nic says:

      btw i have the exact same nike hoodie he’s wearing, but in black. i wanna go cuddle it now and think of rafael :D

      • CC says:

        Like the hoodie/jacket, Rafa’d look hot in the black version as well, no?

        • Nic says:

          oh totally. and even more so if it was mine :)
          er, then again, it would be too tight a fit for him.
          whateva. it’s a gorgeous hoodie.
          paid through the nose though for it in barcelona though. waaaay cheaper (like almost half price!) in niketown london fyi. nike in barcelona is super expensive for some reason.

          • CC says:

            Heh, mine would be too small as well, but I’d happily lend it too him and then never wash it again! Yum, yum, yummy… ;)

            Yeah, I’m kinda itching to go to London and do some Niketown shopping, as I still want one of those AW77 hoodies that is water resistant.

            • An says:

              I love Nike hoodies and i have a white one looking pretty similar to this one:) and, yes, would love to see Rafa try it on but he’s not going to fit into an XS women size!
              I’d better wear it myself for my match tonight:)

    • CC says:

      Heh, he looks cute as hell in the trophy pics, but he doesn’t look more than eleven years old. Thankfully you can just scroll up to pic number six and realise that he’s not eleven. ;)

      • Nic says:

        hahahahaha *blushes*

        • An says:

          Heh, CC…. I don’t need pic 6 to realise that he’s not 11.
          I’m totally aware of evrything on this man!
          I need to not look to much at pic 6 to be able to concentrate, again…

          • CC says:

            Oh, An… Imagine cupping those balls in your hand… ;)

            • An says:

              STOP IT! Please!;)

              • CC says:

                Tennis balls, of course. That’s what you’re doing tonight, no? ;)

                • An says:

                  In half an hour its tennis balls, yes!
                  And thats the only ones i should be thinking about until after the match…;)

                  • CC says:

                    I’m testing your mental stamina, to not think of Rafa and dirrrty when playing. Or being able to play through thinking Rafa and dirrrty…and still winning! :D

                    • An says:

                      Well… I lost in mixed doubles ( with BF )):

                      In matches i always think off Rafa, but not too dirty;) more like, what whould Rafa do… , Run you lazy *** Rafa would run, fight, like Rafa would and so on and so on.
                      But now i was looking at BF’s shorts to see iff i could see it there too;)
                      No seriously, we could’nt have won this match, i always have hard matches agains the opponents we played last night and sometimes winn and sometimes loose when i play with my regular mix-partner so with BF it was impossible but i’m verry proud off him that we got this far ( QF ) never tought that would be possible! He did verry well!
                      Still having chances for the V in ladies-doubles:)

                    • CC says:

                      Awww… Well done anyway, An! And I’m glad you use Rafa as an inspiration on court. I do as well, at work sometimes. :)

                    • dutchgirl says:

                      Well, no shorts-distraction in ladies doubles, An, so good luck!
                      When I’m competing I use Rafa as an inspiration as well, not that it helps, but it gives me a good feeling. :)

  10. krebs2009 says:

    Rafa is FINALLY back in his winning mode and BITING TROPHIES!!!!

    VAMOSSSSSSSS RAFAAAAAAAAA!!! :D

    • mary says:

      So happy for Rafa to start the season in this fashion. He needed it so so bad. It was good that he bet Soderling as this tells the world he is back & he won on a hardcourt against the so called person who brought RAfa down.
      I’m not having a go at Soderling but the journo’s that hyped up this shit. I now hope they can be humbled & forced to eat their own words. Nothing better than a piece of humble pie!!!
      I thought Soderling played well. I also think & I’ve mentioned this before he has worked so hard on his attitude. He’s learning to be humble. He has the best to learn from, Rafa.
      I also heard that Robin likes to party, which is ironic considering he has been dubbed a loner.
      So congratulations Rafa. May this be the beginning of a great season for you.

      • Nic says:

        mary, you’re up super late!!! glad you caught the match and enjoyed it. and i agree with you about the sod actually. was just thinking the same how he’s seemingly making a conscious effort to be more likable. maybe stefan edberg gave him some advice or something on how to handle his rise in popularity last year. gnight!

        • mary says:

          Who could sleep after such a victory. I’m hyped & stoked for the man. He must be somewhere on cloud 9 or unlike me fast asleep or most likely on a plane heading home or Doha. Btw, when is Doha?
          You maybe right Nic, someone has been in Robin Soderlings ear. He has a country right behind him now, so maybe the extra demand on him has made him realize he can’t be a dick anymore & has become a part of the human race. Well whatever, he is improving his demeanor & he is gaining respect from peers & the public. Btw, it is 3.43am & yep it’s snooooooooze time. nite, nite all. Pleasant Rafa dreams, wether it be day or night. ;-)

      • Rafangel says:

        I’ve been wondering if Soderling is getting nicer. Glad someone else spotted it. Good thing!! And all credit for him for doing so – like Djoker learning to be respectful. Really admire that. Meh, they’re kids when they start, no surprise some of them are immature for a while.

  11. xta says:

    mostly he looks so calm…so like a champion…
    and LOVE the white !!!

  12. Wooffie says:

    Congratulations Rafa!!

    I thought he played a great match today and was mixing the play up really well. Soderling played into his hands a little, but it was good that Rafa gave out a resounding message that he is getting some way to being on his way back. Looking forward to Doha now to see if there continues to be improvement.

    Sooo much better than what we saw in November at the WTF and a great attitude too from Rafa. Vamos!!!

    • Karen says:

      These pictures are what being a Rafa fan is all about.I’m so happy for him I could cry!!!!!! Let’s go Rafa, somewhere nice!!!!

  13. Isabel says:

    Yes! It was this incredible victory in early 2010! Many wins come! Congratulations Rafa!

  14. Amberfan says:

    Doha starts on the 4th, so Rafa is likely on his way there.
    Here is the draw:
    http://www.atpworldtour.com/posting/2010/451/mds.pdf

    • Rafangel says:

      Thanks, Amberfan. There’s a friendly draw if ever there was one. Cmon baby!

      • Amberfan says:

        Rafangel (I love your moniker btw),
        Looking at the draw I can’t help but get ahead of myself (I know I shouldn’t) and imagine a Rafa-Roger final, with Rafa winning of course :-)

        • Rafangel says:

          Thanks :) Yeah, me too *slaps wrist* though what I really want to see is Rafa-Rogi GS finals, Rafa winning of course *smiles hopefully at Fates*

  15. patzin says:

    Thought he looked relaxed during the match; I missed the ceremony. Hope it’s on YT.

    • Debbie says:

      Here is 20 seconds of Rafa at the ceremony…looking great and happy. :)

      • Rafafan says:

        Thanks Debbie for that little clip it of the ceremony. I looked at the highlights from Sky and they god damn still didn’t do the ceremony or the speeches. What the heck is that all about when they do for the rest of the tournament but with the winner they don’t show anything. I wonder where this came from?

        • Debbie says:

          Here is the trophy ceremony:

          • aRafaelite says:

            Thanks for posting that link – that was a lovely ceremony, and good to see that there is a definite thawing of relations between Robin and Rafa and respect shown on both sides (it might take me a bit longer to forgive him, but as a start I might trying dropping ‘The Sod’ from now on;)

            • Debbie says:

              You are welcome. :) I also thought it was nice to see things warming up a bit between these two. I still see *his* name and face and get a shiver down my spine, but, glad Rafa can let things go. ;-)

  16. Isabelle says:

    This is so so sweet to see and a great start for the new season!

  17. Rafangel says:

    Thanks for the clarification, CC – it just seemed too good to be true *faints*

    *recovers* tho it still does look a little improbable somehow. I hope it is, tho – he’s cut his hair again and really, every inch off his hair feels like an inch off his manhood, and I’m worried there’ll be nothing left to entertain us with soon :S Good to have some reassurance. But has he never heard of Samson? What is all this self-castration going on in the tennis world at the mo? Not just Rafa, but Feli, Kiefer last year, Fed-ex has chastened all those lovely curls into some flat ’90s schoolboy thing, even Daveeeeeed’s been wielding the knife. Very upset. Grow it boys, we like it long and manly!

    • aRafaelite says:

      It’s not just me then?! Every time Rafa takes an inch or two off his hair, I worry he’s cutting off some of his essential Rafa mojo. I’m starting to get used to it, but still, I miss watching the drops of sweat flying off the tips of his hair as it whips around his face in those freeze-frame moments… *sighs*… ridiculous I know, has nothing to do with his tennis, but somehow I always felt it added to his aura of invincibility and intimidation factor!

    • CC says:

      *Whot?* It’s improbable that he has balls? Surely you’re not surprised by that…? ;)

  18. tiemyshoe says:

    In other adorability news, Rafa and Marc! are doubling up for Doha! AWWWWWW.

  19. faeaki7 says:

    Gorgeous pics and the trophy biting ones are looovely, he so handsome when he smiles especially, what a way to start his season with a victory over the Sod, so be it an exho!

    • Atch2 says:

      His smiles are so genuine and sweet. That bite shot is what we’ve all longed to see.

      And no more ‘V’ jackets this season Rafa?

      • Atch2 says:

        Just watched the prize ceremony. It is a ‘V’ jacket in white, with a white liquid-papered’V’.

  20. Kathy says:

    Great link, thanks Debbie…..tongue alert at 7:41…*pants*
    Picture #4 look.at.that.leg muscle….
    #6 your best shot, Miri! So happy for Rafa’s win, he looks beautiful.
    His shorts are very sheer. Wonder how they would look wet and sweaty.
    going to bed now–with sweet dreams!

  21. Emma says:

    i didn’t see any fist pumps except maybe for one or two slight ones. Is it not acceptable protocal to celebrate winning shots at exhos?

    • dutchgirl says:

      Heh, that’s what I was thinking as well. Looked like he was restraining a bit in that area, and I thought he didn’t want to allow himself to be too enthousiastic because it was just an exho.

      • Rafafan says:

        Yeah noticed no fist pumps also but I think coz it wasn’t “close close” and I think he felt confident and had the upper hand over the sod so was “with calm”. Noticed at the end he did shake his fist, grit his teeth and smile but he did it diplomatically. The smile/grin and the biting of the trophy with his gorgeous teeth (a definite one for macleans toothpaste advert next!)is rafadorable and god he just doesn’t seem to age – your right he seems to look younger than ever b4 – not quite 10/11 though, more like 18/19! Would love to see some pics side by side lifting his trophies in 2005 compared to 200/2010 to see the difference.

        Am walking on air so happppppyyyyyy and pressure is slightly off with the monkey off his back and the indications that he CAN win things again. The proof in the pudding is the eating and he has done just that.

    • CC says:

      *chokes on morning coffee*

      I’m…speechless. After having looked at the photos of Rafa in his fruit salad outfit, thinking that he’s down to looking about 7 years old now, I’m…ahem…more than pleased to see that he’s older than that. Good lord. For every inch he cuts off his curly hair, a few more grow on his chest. Can I take a day off work to study that torso? ;)

    • Atch2 says:

      That shirtless shot is a sight for sore eyes. Wondering if Nike intentionally gives Rafa see-thru pants for the benefit of Rafa (cooler, better ventilation etc), or the fans. But I’m not arguing.

      • mary says:

        Atch2 it may be cooler ventilation for him, but wow when you describe it like that it doesn’t make me feel any cooler. Anything but. *passes out*

        • mary says:

          Btw, CC we will have to have a closer inspection of that “torso”. I’ll have fun counting those hairs as long as I can play with em at the same time. ;-)

          • Karen says:

            Is there a more perfect man on the planet?I seriously don’t think so.In my humble opinion anyway.He’s sooooo everything possible! Can’t think what I would change.Will give it some thought,nope,unable to think of anything.That shirtless pic is playing havok with my brain!!!!

            • dutchgirl says:

              Haha, I was just thinking the same last weekend. I’ve come up with his love for musicals as a downside, but hey, that’s all I came up with, and I can live with that.