Rafael Nadal facts for kids

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Rafael Nadal
Nadal in his service motion
Nadal at the 2011 French Open
Full name Rafael Nadal Parera
Country  Spain
Residence Manacor, Mallorca, Spain
Born 3 June 1986 (1986-06-03) (age 34)
Manacor, Mallorca, Spain
Height 1.85 m (6 ft 1 in)
Turned pro 2001
Plays Left-handed (two-handed backhand), born right-handed
Prize money


  •  3rd all-time leader in earnings
Career record 966–196 (83.13% in ATP Tour; 1st in the Open Era and Grand Slam main draw matches, and in Davis Cup)
Career titles 84 (4th in the Open Era)
Highest ranking No. 1 (18 August 2008)
Current ranking No. 2 (5 November 2018)
Grand Slam Singles results
Australian Open W (2009)
French Open W (2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2017, 2018, 2019)
Wimbledon W (2008, 2010)
US Open W (2010, 2013, 2017, 2019)
Other tournaments
Tour Finals F (2010, 2013)
Olympic Games W (2008)
Career record 132–73 (64.39% in ATP Tour and Grand Slam main draw matches, and in Davis Cup)
Career titles 11
Highest ranking No. 26 (8 August 2005)
Grand Slam Doubles results
Australian Open 3R (2004, 2005)
Wimbledon 2R (2005)
US Open SF (2004)
Other Doubles tournaments
Olympic Games W (2016)
Team Competitions
Davis Cup W (2004, 2008, 2009, 2011)
Last updated on: 9 September 2019.

Rafael "Rafa" Nadal Parera (born 3 June 1986) is a Spanish professional tennis player, currently ranked world No. 2 in men's singles tennis by the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP).

Nadal has won 19 Grand Slam singles titles, the second most in history for a male player, as well as a record 35 ATP Tour Masters 1000 titles, 20 ATP Tour 500 titles, and the 2008 Olympic gold medal in singles. In addition, Nadal has held the world No. 1 ranking for a total of 196 weeks., including being the year-end No. 1 four times. In majors, Nadal has won a record twelve French Open titles, four US Open titles, two Wimbledon titles, and one Australian Open title. Nadal has won 84 career titles overall, including a record 59 clay court titles. With 81 consecutive match wins on clay, Nadal holds the record for the longest single-surface win streak in the Open Era.

Nadal was a member of the winning Spain Davis Cup team in 2004, 2008, 2009, and 2011. In 2010, he became the seventh male player in history and youngest of five in the Open Era, at age 24, to achieve the Career Grand Slam. He is the second male player, after Andre Agassi, to complete the singles Career Golden Slam. In 2011, Nadal was named the Laureus World Sportsman of the Year.

Early life

Rafael Nadal was born in Manacor, a town on the island of Mallorca in the Balearic Islands, Spain to parents Ana María Parera and Sebastián Nadal Homar. His father is a businessman, owner of an insurance company, glass and window company Vidres Mallorca, and the restaurant, Sa Punta. Rafael has a younger sister, María Isabel. His uncle, Miguel Ángel Nadal, is a retired professional footballer, who played for RCD Mallorca, FC Barcelona, and the Spanish national team. He idolized Barcelona striker Ronaldo as a child, and via his uncle got access to the Barcelona dressing room to have a photo with the Brazilian. Recognizing in Rafael a natural talent, another uncle, Toni Nadal, a former professional tennis player, introduced him to tennis when he was three years old.

At age 8, Nadal won an under-12 regional tennis championship at a time when he was also a promising football player. This made Toni Nadal intensify training, and it was at that time that his uncle encouraged Nadal to play left-handed for a natural advantage on the tennis court, after studying Nadal's then two-handed forehand stroke.

At age 12, Nadal won the Spanish and European tennis titles in his age group, while also playing football. Nadal's father made him choose between football and tennis so that his school work would not deteriorate entirely. Nadal said: "I chose tennis. Football had to stop straight away."

When he was 14, the Spanish tennis federation requested that Nadal leave Mallorca and move to Barcelona to continue his tennis training. His family turned down this request, partly because they feared his education would suffer, but also because Toni said that "I don't want to believe that you have to go to America, or other places to be a good athlete. You can do it from your home." The decision to stay home meant less financial support from the federation; instead, Nadal's father covered the costs. In May 2001, he defeated former Grand Slam tournament champion Pat Cash in a clay-court exhibition match.

Personal life

Nadal lived with his parents and younger sister Maria Isabel in a five-story apartment building in their hometown of Manacor, Mallorca. In June 2009, Spanish newspaper La Vanguardia, and then The New York Times, reported that his parents, Ana Maria and Sebastian, had separated. This news came after weeks of speculation in Internet posts and message boards over Nadal's personal issues as the cause of his setback.

Nadal has said that he is agnostic. As a young boy, he would run home from school to watch Goku in his favorite Japanese anime, Dragon Ball. CNN released an article about Nadal's childhood inspiration, and called him "the Dragon Ball of tennis" owing to his unorthodox style "from another planet".

In addition to tennis and football, Nadal enjoys playing golf and poker. In April 2014 he played the world's No. 1 female poker player, Vanessa Selbst, in a poker game in Monaco. Nadal's autobiography, Rafa (Hyperion, 2012, ), written with assistance from John Carlin, was published in August 2011. Nadal has been dating long-time girlfriend María Francisca (Xisca) Perelló since 2005. In January 2019, it was announced that the couple are set to marry.

Grand Slam record

This table shows Nadal's performance in each Grand Slam tournament in singles.

Year Australian Open French Open Wimbledon US Open
2003 Did not enter Injured Round 3 Round 2
2004 Round 3 Injured Injured Round 2
2005 Round 4 Winner Round 2 Round 3
2006 Injured Winner Final Quarter-final
2007 Quarter-final Winner Final Round 4
2008 Semi-final Winner Winner Semi-final
2009 Winner Round 4 Injured Semi-final
2010 Quarter-final Winner Winner Winner
2011 Quarter-final Winner Final Final
2012 Final Winner Round 2 Absent
2013 Absent Winner Round 1 Winner
2014 Final Winner Round 4 Absent
2015 Quarter-final Quarter-final Round 2 Round 3
2016 Round 1 Round 3 Absent Round 4
2017 Final Winner Round 4 Winner
2018 Quarter-final Winner Semi-final Semi-final
2019 Final Winner Semi-final Winner

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Rafael Nadal Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.