Mallorca’s Most Famous: Rafael Nadal

30 septiembre 2022

I am always working for the same goal: to improve as a player and as a person. – Rafael Nadal

18 Grand Slams. 12 French Open titles. 83 career titles overall. One of only two men to have won all four majors, the Australian Open, the French Open, Wimbledon, and the US Open. An Olympic gold medal holder. Meet the “King of Clay”, one of the most prolific, enduring and famous names in the tennis world and Mallorca’s very own, Rafael Nadal.

The Beginning

It all began in Manacor. That’s not a sentence you hear every day, is it? Mallorca’s second largest city is certainly not the kind of place people flock to on holiday. It’s industrial, a worker’s city, and far from the buzzy tourists centres of the southwest. But nonetheless, Manacor it is, the birthplace of Rafael Nadal Parera on 3 June 1986.

Rafael, or Rafa as he known, first picked up a racquet at the ripe old age of three, at the behest of his uncle Toni Nadal, who in another life was a pro tennis player himself. Toni saw raw talent in the toddler and got him interested in the game. By the age of 8, he won an under-12 regional championship and at 12, he had earned both the Spanish and European tennis titles for his age group.

Rafael Nadal Childhood photo

He turned pro three years later in 2001, where he made his mark at several high profile events, including reaching the semi-finals at Wimbledon at 16 as well as helping Spain beat the USA in the Davis Cup that same year. By 2003, Nadal had clawed his way to the top 50 in the professional rankings.

In 2005, whilst still only a teenager, he dominated the clay court season winning 24 consecutive matches, followed by an astounding French Open win making him the second man ever to win it on his first try and the only teen to have nabbed a Grand Slam singles title since Pete Sampras’s 1990 win.

This was also the year he met his now-fiancé, Xisca Perelló.

Rafael Nadal

The Middle #

By 2008, Nadal was firmly entrenched in the tennis world and a serious contender. He had had some major injuries, notably his knee and foot, but had managed to remain standing winning the French Open twice more.

That year was to be a real stand out for Nadal. In addition to a series of high profile wins, including another French Open win as well his first at Wimbledon, he won an Olympic gold medal, had a 32 match winning streak and was seeded #1 in the world.

With his place now firmly established in the tennis world he was finally able to look at life off the court, and it was in 2008 he founded the Rafa Nadal Foundation with his mother Ana Maria Parera back home on the island. This was his first foray into charitable works and has led him to participate in others such as the Elton John AIDS Foundation, City Harvest, Small Steps Program and Laureus Sport for Good Foundation.

His tennis career continued with monumental wins, and the occasional setback, over the next several years, including more Grand Slam wins securing his place consistently in the top 5 spots.

Shutterstock 549424189

In 2016, he once again showed his deep ties to Mallorca and opened the Rafa Nadal Academy in his hometown of Manacor. It is a high-performance centre for up and coming young athletes that combines tennis and education, so academics don’t suffer whilst students continue their tennis training programmes. In conjunction with the American International School, the balance between work, play and hard core training can exist.

Nadal with younger players

The Now #

Nadal in 2019 is still a force to be reckoned with. He won his 12th French Open title, as well as performing well at other major matches, such as Wimbledon. Currently ranked at #2 in the world, he shows no sign of slowing up.

He has made news off the court this past year for other reasons, as well. In October 2018, a freak rainstorm left the area around his hometown devastated. He opened the academy’s doors to flood victims and donated €1million to assist in rebuilding the town most hard hit, Sant Llorenç des Cardassar.

And on a brighter note, it was announced in January 2019 that he and long-time love Xisca Perelló were to be married.

We expect to see more happy times ahead for this competitive force of nature whose roots are as important to him as his game.


And on a brighter note, it was announced in January 2019 that he and long-time love Xisca Perelló were to be married.

We expect to see more happy times ahead for this competitive force of nature whose roots are as important to him as his game.

534456 E1 EDC0 460 F 8815 FD6921 E65 A77

My body is like an old machine. To put this machine on again it already again takes some time.

News of Nadal in 2022 #

Rafa made history by winning 21 Gran Slam victories in men's singles. He's won 91 ATP singles, including 36 Master titles with 62 of them on clay. He has a record 13 French Open titles and has his sights set for a 14th in the coming days.

We watched Nadal in Australia, showing how his character, combined with determination and persistence with a touch of Fate, showed us how he will help influence future tennis pros. He understands the realities of being a 36 year-old tennis player. At the Rafa Nadal Academy in Manacor, people come from all over the world to get a glimpse of what made him strong. If you haven't been there, check out the website at Rafa Nadal Academy News for the latest local and global news on Nadal's impact on tennis. The Movistar facility in Manacor is the most comprehensive place, offering annual and semestre programmes. Nadal's impact on tennis far exceeds his personal wins. He is shaping the future of the sport for generations to come. And, it's all happening here on Mallorca.



#rafaelnadalnews#rafaelnadalinstagram#rafaelnadalwiki#manacor#tennisacademy mallorca#rafanadalacademyshop#rafaelnadal#rafaelnadlhome#rafaelnadalbiography

30 septiembre, 2022

En este sitio se utilizan cookies para ofrecer una experiencia más personalizada.

Puede obtener más información de las mismas en nuestra "Política de cookies".