Stats fan? Wondering that the BabolatPlay racket can show you? If you go to Rafa’s profile page on the RG site, you can see his BabolatPlay stats. (It’s also a way to see all their articles/videos that are tagged Rafa.)
The racket was the subject of his post-match interview too:
Today’s Recommended Listen:
Be sure to scroll all the way down to the end of the storify for a funny tennis player trash talking session on twitter about PlayStation that mentions Rafa.
- Orange and Blue Debut – by Steve Tignor (tennis.com)
Nadal says “life will continue” if he doesn’t win the French Open, but I’d say Tuesday was a step in the right direction in his quest for his 10th title. You can only tell so much from day-to-day form; in 2009, he didn’t drop a set in his first three rounds before losing to Robin Soderling in the fourth. But you could see today how the tournament’s extended length, its two weeks of three-out-of-five-set matches on labor-intensive red clay, can help him work through any problems with his form and confidence. He’s going to get to hit a lot of balls this week.
- Nadal Begins Quest For 10th Roland Garros Crown – via atpworldtour.com
- Nadal: “My Mentality Is the Same” – via atpworldtour.com
- Rafael Nadal starts defence of his French Open title with a ruthless win – via skysports.com. Includes a video excerpt from the presser.
- Rafael Nadal eases past Quentin Halys in French Open first round – by Kevin Mitchell (theguardian.com)
At the end the sometimes fickle French crowd gave their Spanish king a standing ovation, unusual for a perfunctory first-round win against one of their own, and perhaps there was a touch of guilt for past indifference to his genius or maybe pity for his recent struggles. The French love ambivalence.
- Will Nadal’s dominant opening win in Paris restore his confidence? – by Jon Wertheim (si.com)
And that’s the thing about hope: it cuts both ways. As Nadal sinks those teeth not into the trophy, but into a major where he has lost one match over the last decade, he must be fired with faith. Paris he could restore his game. And, in the process, his self-belief.
- Mind-boggling proof of Rafael Nadal’s historic French Open dominance – by Chris Chase and Rubie Edmonson (usatoday.com)
Not for Nadal, though. He won his first-round match on Tuesday to move to 67-1 all-time at the French Open. Even if Rafa lost his next six matches at Roland Garros (which would take him to 2020), he’d still have the best winning percentage among all-time Slam winners. That, my friends, is dominance.
- Rafael Nadal wins and is still the undeniable favourite – by Matt Trollope (rolandgarros.com)
- The Umpire on Rafael Nadal’s Banned List – by Joshua Robinson (wsj.com)
- Rafael Nadal: Can French Open king win ‘La Decima’ in Paris? – by Russell Fuller (bbc.co.uk)
- Day 3 Notebook: Janowicz’s awkward handshake; Ferrer wins 300th on clay – AP via tennis.com
“Confidence is the most important thing,” Toni said. “You can hit a good ball, but you need to win matches to have confidence.”
- Todas las ‘víctimas’ de Nadal en Roland Garros
- Rafael Nadal And The $800,000 Richard Mille RM 27-02 Vie For Tenth Roland Garros Title – by Elizabeth Doerr (forbes.com)
- How Djoker, Rafa relax before matches – espn.com (starts out rather leg-tastic)
- Hot shot: 1st round
- Match highlights
- What you missed: Day 3
- Highlight reel
- The Kley Number, Rafael Nadal’s stats in Roland Garros – Eurosport
- Fernando Alonso: Rafael Nadal is ‘a tennis god’
- Debuta Rafa Nadal
- Match footage from up-close
- Victoria de Rafa Nadal en su debut – mini match summary
- Some practice footage
- Following the favourites: Day 3 from the RG site.
- Hair raising
- Lots of Rafa through the years photos in dali.nz2005’s flickr stream
- Some nice Rafa pics in this gallery.
Rafa does social media:
Social media related to Rafa:
- Years Later for Guillermo Vilas, He’s Still Not the One – by Christopher Clarey (nytimes.com). In case you were wondering why Rafa was asked about Vilas.