Monday, June 11, 2007

VAMOS RAFA!!!



Photos courtesy of Yahoo news.


This Spanish tennis phenomenon, often booed during his matches at Roland Garros, proved to everybody once more why he is worthy of the title "King of Clay." Rafael Nadal Parera, or Rafa to his family and friends, just won his third consecutive French Open Title in a row. My voice is almost hoarse from cheering, even if I just watched the French Open in the comfort of our bedroom.

I was surprised to find out that this left-handed Capri-wearing Spaniard is not naturally left-handed. Rafa is really right-handed. However, when he was ten years old, his uncle and current coach Toni Nadal discovered that this young lad had a future in tennis. Toni Nadal then decided that his two-handed backhand would benefit from a strong right arm, so he taught Rafa to play with his left hand.

What really amazed me most is the fact that he still lives in his hometown, in the island of Majorca in Spain, in their family home with his parents, grandparents, his sister, Uncle Toni and his family. His family is what keeps him grounded. There are talks that he still occupies one room even if he is already a millionaire. The locals have gotten used to having him around so that he doesn't get special treatment. He still has the same set of friends he had before he became famous. Humility among successful sports figures is a rarity nowadays.
As well as producing a champion, the family is happy it has brought up a well-mannered young man. "He has never broken a racquet in anger," Toni said. "It would be showing a lack of respect to people who actually have to buy the equipment to play the sport."


With this, I leave you with a funny video I found featuring Rafa. Enjoy!
Vamos Rafa!

23 comments:

Wil said...

It's a good thing Nadal can play tennis better than he can sing or dance. hahaha. Anyway, I didn't know he's really right-handed and that it was a conscious decision to play left-handed. Is it really an advantage? It looks like it. :D

snglguy said...

The little I know about the guy is from what I read in the newspapers, oh and also from that Kia Sorrento ad on tv. Ikaw, ni-research mo pa... fan ka nga talaga! Hehehe :-D

Major Tom said...

I forgot about the match last night; I should have watched it and had bookmarked it in my mind. But I guess, I just have to watched out for the replay tonight...

I think Nadal is the most worthy rival to the streaking Federer and I would love to see a healthy match-up or rivalry evolved between the two...It'll make tennis very interesting...

kyels said...

I watched the match and was so happy when Rafa won! I was going to scream but the household was sleeping!

Rafa is really the "King of Clay", definitely!

Rey said...

I'm a FED-Ex guy so naturally I was a bit disapointed that Roger has to wait another year to try and lift the Rolland Garros silver cup.

There's really no excuse since Federer squandered so many in the first set that could have been break points. I did admire Nadal's relentless heart. He clearly is the difference in this match and he deserved his day. Viva El Campion.

ipanema said...

woooohoooo!!! yes! finally, he proved himself worthy. :)

i was likewise jumping with joy whe he won.

Your'e right. Humility and simplicity for celebrities is hard to find. I love his story. Thanks for sharing. :)

momoftwo said...

Yes, Go Rafa! I enjoyed watching him play. I am hoping to get a glimpse of them next time they're back in Miami.

I really like his story. Tennis is getting exciting because of him and Federer.

BTW, Ladybug can I link you? Thanks

ladybug said...

wil> I think so too! Nadal looked really awkward singing La Bamba. Actually, I couldn't really understand the logic behing shifting Nadal from being right-handed to left-handed. I guess it works for him though.

ladybug said...

snglguy> I remember that Kia ad! :-D Hanep nga yun eh. Shempre, fan talaga. Did you know that I decided to name my son Raphael because of him??? Changed the spelling to match the name of the archangel.

ladybug said...

major tom> I totally agree. I like both players! Aminado naman ako na mas magaling pa rin talaga si Federer in other surfaces. I prefer Nadal though because of his fiery attitude. Never say die kumbaga.

ladybug said...

kyels> Hahahaha...poor you. Anyway, i know it was still enjoyable for you because Nadal won. Thanks. Take care.

ladybug said...

rey> I also like Federer. I think I will be cheering for him in the upcoming Wimbledon a little over a week from now. But I really really admire Rafael's attitude on court. Never say die talaga. Medyo sumuko na rin kasi si Federer during the third set, coming on to the 4th set.

ladybug said...

ipanema> You're welcome. I especially liked the video (although not his singing talent). Hahahaha. He's still young. I hope he doesn't change.

ladybug said...

momoftwo> Yes, tennis is getting exciting because of these 2. Reminds me of the sampras-agassi days. When you see him, can yo please kiss him for me???? Hahahaha...thanks! Yes, I'll link you too. Please give me till Sunday to arrange my blogroll. I'm addicted to Pinoy Big Brother nowadays.

momoftwo said...

thanks Ladybug :) I am desperate to get tickets for next tournament here, it goes on sale in August this yr for April 2008 and its hard to get the good seats, sold out very quick! If I can, I'll give him kisses for you hehehe

Toe said...

Hahaha... that video is hilarious! Nakakatawa talaga si Rafa. :)

Senor Enrique said...

I like this young man, Ladybug. He brings a lot of excitement to the game!

Majorca is also known for being the place where they design and manufacture Camper shoes :)

Emmet said...

I like Nadal, but I actually wanted Federer to win the French Open... I want him to win all 4 majors!

yoshke said...

I'm not really a Nadal fan. Hehe. Just commented to show you I dropped by. Hehe.

I love Marat Safin. Aright, throw your rocks at me now. :D

lazarus said...

I always cheer on Rafa's every opponent. I don't know why I dislike him, when he's the 2nd best player in the planet today.

It must be Roger's spell. he he.

Bugsybee said...

Forgive me for being such an ignoramus but, although I read about Rafa once in a while, I have never seen him play. Now I wonder why people would boo such a guy? I like people like Rafa who have soared so high with their achievements and yet manage to keep their feet on the ground. Humility, as they say, is the hardest of virtues. :)

But if Rafa has managed to remain humble till now, then I too must say, "Vamos ya, Rafa!"

JV said...

Perhaps a singing career for Rafa? LOL! Have a happy weekend Ladybug!

ladybug said...

momoftwo, toe, eric. emmet, yoshke, lazarus, bugsybee, jv> Thank you all for your comments. Anyway, Federer won the Wimbledon again. This just proves that Rafael is the King of Clay, while Federer is the King of Grass (and other surfaces for that matter).