Regular visitors to this photo blog will have noticed that I do the occasional eulogy on the young tennis master from Manacor (Mallorca), Rafa Nadal.
Today it will be no eulogy but more of a commiseration, I am afraid. Just four days before Rafa Nadal’s 23rd birthday, the Grand Slam tennis tournament of Roland Garros in Paris (France) was meant to bring another win and another record for the Number One in the tennis rankings, but his opponent, Robin Söderling, had different plans yesterday. Mr. Söderling from Tibro (Sweden) with an ATP ranking of 25 managed one of the biggest upsets in male Grand Slam tennis history by beating Rafael Nadal in four sets (6:2, 6:7, 6:4, 7:6) in the fourth round of the French Open at Roland Garros. It was all over after 210 minutes for Rafa’s dream of a fifth consecutive French Open title. Yesterday’s was the first defeat ever for Rafael Nadal at Roland Garros since his debut there in 2005. Rafa Nadal will not eat his birthday cake in Paris this year, I guess.
Oh well, it had to happen one day at some stage I suppose.
Rafa Nadal found these words after his surprise exit: “This is not a tragedy. I had to lose one day. I must accept my defeats with the same level of calm that I accept my victories.” Wise words.
My photo was taken a few months ago at a newsagent’s in Manacor where Rafa Nadal regularly uses the facilities to have his photograph taken.
The photo was taken in Manacor, Mallorca, Baleares, Spain. The date: December 2nd, 2008. The time was 18:01:18.