Rafael Nadal Biography
Rafael Nadal is one of the top tennis players in the world and the winner of 8 titles at the French Opens, 2 Wimbledons and the US Open in 2010 and 2013! Find out more about this Spanish tennis star right here.
Rafael Nadal - Tennis Tot
Rafael Nadal was born on the island of Mallorca in Spain on June 3, 1986 and still lives there with his family. He started playing tennis when he was just three years old, after watching his Uncle Tony play the sport at a local tennis club. Rafael's uncle began teaching him how to play tennis and by the age of 11, Rafael was winning youth tennis tournaments all across Spain. Uncle Tony remains Raffa's coach today
Rafael Nadal - Teenage Tennis Titan
Rafael turned pro when he was 15 and by 2003, he was one of the top 50 ranked mens tennis players in the world. With his unique left-handed playing style and long hair, Nadal became a fan favorite both in Spain and around the world. In 2005, Rafael continued to work his way up the world rankings and won the 2005 French Open with a four set victory over Mariano Puerta of Argentina. On the road to the French Open final, Rafael also upset Roger Federer, the world's number one ranked player. Nadal repeated as French Open champ in 2006, 2007 and 2008 and won his 65th straight match on clay court, making him the undisputed champion of clay-court tennis. He followed up by winning Wimbledon in 2008. In 2009 Rafael won his first hard-court Grand Slam singles title against Roger Federer in the Australian Open. At the 2009 French Open Rafael defeated Lleyton Hewitt and set the record of 31 consecutive wins at Roland Garros.
Rafa with his trophy at the 2013 US Open
Rafael Nadal - Fun Facts
- Rafael Nadal is nicknamed "Rafa" by his friends and family.
- When he's not dominating on the tennis court, Rafael Nadal likes playing video games, fishing and playing soccer.
- Rafael is naturally right-handed, except when it comes to playing tennis, which he does left-handed. His Uncle Tony, who is still is coach, taught him to play left-handed when he was 10.
- Rafael's Uncle Miguel was a Spanish soccer star, who played for Spain in soccer's World Cup three times.
- Rafa has quietly been dating long time girlfriend Xisca Perello for almost seven years.
- In July of 2012 Rafael withdrew from the 2012 Summer Olympics due to a knee injury. He then withdrew from multiple tournaments for the rest of the year.
- In March of 2013 Rafael returned to the Indian Wells Masters tournament where he defeated Roger Federer in the finals.
- After taking almost a year break from tennis due to injury, Rafa seems to be back stronger than ever in 2013.