Rafa arriving home:
Posted by Rafael Nadal King of Tennis.
FYI – for the most part, I’m not bothering with “Rafa is over” or “how dare you say Rafa is over” op-eds. Why? I think the first is silly and the second just brings attention to the first. I’ll let Rafa answer these assumptions/opinions on the court.
- Nadal Still Upbeat for Rest of the Year – Reuters via nytimes.com
“I hope I’ll be able to continue on the tour, and before the end of the year I’d like to be even fitter and to work on the parts of my game that I have to work on,” Nadal said.
“Physically I have to be good. You know, last year I had some physical incidents, but so far this year I feel good. I’m not injured. This is something very important.
“You know, when you’re injured, there is not much you can do. So far, as I was saying, everything is good.”
- Analysis-Nadal a Spent Force? No! Say His Rivals – Reuters via nytimes.com
- Rebuilding Rafael Nadal’s confidence could take time, tennis legend Billie Jean King says – by Michael McLaughlin (usatoday.com)
Billie Jean King believes she could fix Rafael Nadal’s confidence issues.
“He’s playing better than he was [before],” King said Wednesday. “I just don’t know if he knows it.”
- El regreso en cuatro pasos de Rafael Nadal – by T Jaume (ultimahora.es) Here’s the mangle – as usual, he sounds so levelheaded.
- The French Open: From Court to Catwalk – by Vanessa Friedman (nytimes.com)
Consider the pinks and fuchsias of Lucie Safarova and Ms. Bouchard — not to mention Mr. Nadal’s tone-on-tone Nike blues, which the Twitterati labeled alternatively Smurflike and Cookie Monsterish, but seemed to me rather an attempt, perhaps unsuccessful but familiar to us fashion types, to reference the Côte d’Azur.
- INTERVIEW: Carla Suarez Navarro carving her own niche in women’s tennis – by Reem Abulleil (sport360.com)
As much as Nadal is appreciated worldwide, she feels we are yet to comprehend the magnitude of his achievements.
She says: “It’s crazy. I think that maybe we won’t be able to value what Rafa’s achieving now, the possibility of winning a 10th French Open. In the coming years, when the likes of Nick Kyrgios and Grigor Dimitrov and these people come up, we’ll value more what Rafa is doing and has done. It’s crazy if he wins this year. It’s not 10 times in 20 years, it’s 10 times in 11 years or 12 years. Losing one match here. I think it’s one thing we’re never going to see again.”
- Larry Ellison Is Spending a Fortune to Save American Tennis – by Ashlee Vance (bloomberg.com)
“It is so important for the tour to have someone like Larry buying a big tournament and pushing the other events,” says Rafael Nadal, a three-time winner at Indian Wells, shortly after losing to Milos Raonic in the quarterfinals this year. Nadal stays at Porcupine Creek as Ellison’s guest during the tournament. The estate has three tennis courts nestled into a grassy knoll with butlers on call from a central cabana to serve espresso, Champagne, or, as Nadal prefers, chilled coconut water. The cabana could be Nadal’s second home: Scores of his rackets fill a floor-to-ceiling locker; photographs of his trophy presentations dot the walls.
- Rafa Nadal pasa el día en Menorca tras ser eliminado en Roland Garros – via menorcaaldia.com. Note, the image is from last year. (mangle)
- Why Some Tennis Matches Take Forever – by Carl Bialik (fivethirtyeight.com)
Speedy Roger Federer finished off relatively fast Gael Monfils in two hours and 12 minutes, taking 36 seconds per point. Rafael Nadal’s defeat of Jack Sock, on the other hand, required two fewer points but 41 more minutes; it took 47 seconds per point. All those seconds add up fast.
In those matches, how many average hits were there per point? You have to take that into consideration when looking at overall match time too. Are there stats on that? I couldn’t find them. The footnote mentions that the Fed one had more long rallies, but what was the average number of hits per point? Without knowing that, the time per point stat is pretty meaningless, IMHO. Also, in the Rafa/Sock match, Sock was over the time limit frequently (more than half) of the time too. Why wasn’t he ever called?
Look, Rafa takes too much time according to the rules. That’s a fact. He cannot really claim any moral high ground on that point. (Also, I watched the final set of the 2008 Wimbledon final last night – a tense match, with a lot on the line where one might need to stop and think a lot before a serve. Rafa takes much, much longer and has many more ticks now than he did then.) Rafa often violates the time between points rule on a majority of points in a match. So, why is he mainly called on break points against? Or deuce? Or late in a set in critical games? Why not early in a match or set? Or on the first point he exceeds the limit? Why was he the only one called for time violations in his matches when his opponents also exceeded the time limit – some on a majority of points? This is my problem with the situation. My bottom line is that the enforcement of the rule very inconsistent and unfair (to put it mildy – TM JMac).
Personally, I think that if time violations were called every single time a player exceeded the limit, people would realize how ridiculous the rule is – especially in Majors when the limit is 20 seconds.
Rafa does social media:
— Rafa Nadal (@RafaelNadal) June 4, 2015
(Um. Not sure if posing for a pic to promote a world hunger/poverty relief effort while wearing a watch that costs that much is a good idea.)
Social media related to Rafa:
- Break Serve? For Most Players, It’s a Struggle to Break Even – by John Martin (nytimes.com)
Late last year, a major international study concluded that players must earn a minimum of $160,000 a year in prize money merely to break even (factoring in salaries and travel expenses for their coaches). Of more than 2,000 active players, fewer than 250 men and women earn the minimum, according to two Australian researchers.