Rafael Nadal

Rafael Nadal Profile

Rafael “Rafa” Nadal Parera is a Spanish professional tennis player widely regarded as one of the best men’s singles players of the Open Era. 

Nadal is known for his athletic style and dominance on clay courts, having won a staggering 81 matches in a row on the surface between 2005 and 2007.

Nadal was born in Manacor, a town on the Spanish Island of Mallorca, in 1986. Although his father was a businessman, there was a strong sporting tradition in the family with his uncle Miguel starring for Barcelona FC in the 1990’s. It was his uncle and future coach Toni who introduced Rafa to tennis when he was aged just three years old.

Nadal turned professional aged 15 and won his first match in April 2002, becoming the ninth player of the Open Era to do so before his 16th birthday. In 2005, Nadal won his first Grand Slam title at the French Open while still a teenager, and after winning the US Open in 2010, he became the youngest player to achieve a men’s singles career Grand Slam in the Open Era.

Nadal was part of the ‘Big Four’ that dominated the top tiers of men’s tennis between 2004 and 2016, alongside Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray. 

Nadal has been named ATP Player of the Year, ITF World Champion, and has been ranked as world number one in the ATP Rankings on multiple occasions.

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