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‘Achieving what Rafael Nadal has achieved is practically…’, says former star

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2021 was certainly not the best year of his career for Rafael Nadal. The Spanish phenomenon has long been plagued by injuries, first to the back and then to the foot. The former world number 1 was able to play the misery of seven official tournaments this season, putting two titles on the board respectively in Barcelona and at the Foro Italico in Rome.

 

 

The great goal of the 35-year-old Majorcan was obviously Roland Garros, where he hoped to seize his 14th seal to hoist himself to 21 Majors. The journey of the 20-time Grand Slam champion was interrupted in the semifinals by Novak Djokovic, who was then able to win the tournament by recovering Stefanos Tsitsipas in the final.

Foot pain forced Rafa to miss both Wimbledon and the Tokyo Olympics in hopes of returning to 100% for the hard court season. Nadal made his return to Washington, but his first experience in the US capital lasted just a couple of meetings.

After being eliminated by Lloyd Harris and giving up the American Masters 1000, the Manacor veteran decided to close his 2021 prematurely. Recently, the Iberian wanted to update his fans by announcing that he had undergone a foot treatment.

In a long interview granted to ‘AS’, former Olympic silver medalist Jordi Arrese reflected on the current conditions of his illustrious compatriot.

Arrese talks about Rafael Nadal
The 57-year-old stated, “Achieving what Rafael Nadal has achieved is practically impossible.

We will see if someone surpasses it”. He continued, “If Rafa recovers, he still has two or three very good years left because he has too good a level and is a mental predator,” stressed the Spaniard. Speaking at an event marking the renewal of the Mutua Madrid Open until 2030, tournament director Feliciano Lopez expressed hope that Rafael Nadal recovers in time to compete at the Madrid Masters next year.

“We hope to see Rafael Nadal in the next edition,” Lopez said. “He is still young and has shown that he can overcome injuries. He will be welcome because he is the most beloved player in the tournament.” Lopez went on to mention Roger Federer, who also ended his 2021 season due to knee injury.

“I hope Federer also recovers because that will mean that we have all the best available for the tournament,” Lopez added. Rafael Nadal is easily the greatest claycourt player in the history of tennis. He has won the French Open a record 13 times, and has amassed 27 Masters 1000 titles on the surface. But the Masters event in his home country – the Madrid Open – has historically been his weakest.

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Stefanos Tsitsipas claims innocence after Andy Murray vents anger at…….

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Stefanos Tsitsipas denied bending the rules with his bathroom breaks during his dramatic five-set victory over Andy Murray at the US Open.

Scot Murray, 34, blasted the Greek third seed for the “nonsense” and said he had lost respect for him after Tsitsipas disappeared off court for almost eight minutes at the start of the fifth set.

However, after closing out a 2-6 7-6 (7) 3-6 6-3 6-4 victory over the 2012 champion in just less than five hours, Tsitsipas said: “If there’s something that he has to tell me, we should speak, the two of us, to kind of understand what went wrong.

I don’t think I broke any rules. I played by the guidelines

Stefanos Tsitsipas
“I don’t think I broke any rules. I played by the guidelines, how everything is. I don’t know how my opponent feels when I’m out there playing the match. It’s not really my priority.

“As far as I’m playing by the rules and sticking to what the ATP says is fair, then the rest is fine. I have nothing against him. Absolutely nothing.”

Murray’s defeat, and that of Marin Cilic, who had to retire at two sets all against Philipp Kohlschreiber, means there is only one player left in the men’s draw to have won a grand slam title – the 20-time major winner Novak Djokovic.

Daniil Medvedev, the second seed from Russia, got his bid for a maiden grand slam title off to a confident start by beating Richard Gasquet in straight sets.

The 25-year-old roared past Frenchman Gasquet 6-4 6-3 6-1 in less than two hours.

RBA drops just games to advance to Round 2.

Nick Kyrgios won just seven games as his campaign came to an end at the hands of Roberto Bautista Agut.

Australian Kyrgios threw in his usual tweeners and underarm serves but Bautista Agut, the unflappable 18th seed from Spain, was too solid as he ran out 6-3 6-4 6-0 winner.

Andrey Rublev, the Russian fifth seed, is safely through after a straight-sets win over Croatian veteran Ivo Karlovic.

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Usain Bolt reveals he’s ‘always’ had a crush on Beyoncé and he was starstruck to meet her

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He may hold the title as the fastest man in the world, but even Usain Bolt gets nervous once in a while, especially when it comes to meeting beautiful women. Speaking to Lorraine Kelly on Friday morning, the nine-time Olympic gold medallist revealed that he has a crush on none other than Beyoncé.

The sporting legend revealed his celebrity crush live on Lorraine

“Because I was always a fan, I’ve always had a crush on Beyoncé, so I’ve always had a conversation I would have [in my head] and when I met her I was like [stares open-eyed] ‘hi’,” he told the day time host. “I could tell I was looking at her weird because she was looking at me like, ‘why is he staring at me’. It was fun though.”

President Obama also has an affect on the 30-year-old, who admitted: “When I met Obama that was also massive for me.”

Usain was on Lorraine to chat about his new documentary I Am Bolt, which follows the sporting legend in the 18 months leading up to his historical Olympic triple win in Rio this year.

Talking about his training, Usain revealed: “People always say, ‘you make it look so easy, I could probably do it’ and I’m like, ‘no, no’. So to make people see the work that I put in and the strain that goes in, mentally and physically. I wanted people to see all of that so they could understand me better and to see the work I put in is no joke.”

The Olympic champion also shut down rumours that he was engaged to his main crush, girlfriend of two years, Kasi Bennett, following a heavily hinted Snapchat image of the couple on holiday. The sweet snap was accompanied by the caption “She said yes”, complete with emojis of a bride and a love heart.

“I’m not engaged. Me and my girlfriend, we went on a trip to Bora Bora and we took a picture and somebody edited my Snapchat, and edited it, and it said, ‘she said yes’ with a ring and a mad face and stuff and I was like [shocked face], it was well done though. It was well done, you know what I mean,” he explained.

Despite there being no talk of wedding bells anytime soon, it hasn’t stopped Usain’s mum from hoping she will be a grandmother in the near future. “My mum is pressuring me. I was like, ‘mum just let me retire and I’ll get there,'” he said.

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Unbelievable: Maria Sharapova says she got mobbed in the Olympic village cafeteria

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Many players prefer not to stay at the Olympic village as other athletes tend to get a little star struck at coming face to face with high profile superstars. Maria Sharapova got a taste of this herself when she went into the cafeteria at the Olympic village.

Sharapova is the highest earning female athlete in the world and a global superstar. “I’m usually pretty naïve about like people’s knowledge of me, my career, what I’ve achieved,” Sharapova told the press after her first round win on Sunday in London.

“I try to be pretty humble about it, but the biggest mistake I’ve made in a long time was entering the cafeteria. I didn’t walk out eating any food. I barely got an orange juice. It was quite funny. Actually, I didn’t sign any autographs, it was just pictures. I felt like a little statue.”

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