Rafael Nadal gets emotional after French Open round one defeat, acknowledges support in viral video | Tennis News - Hindustan Times
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Rafael Nadal gets emotional after French Open round one defeat, acknowledges support in viral video

May 28, 2024 06:03 AM IST

Rafael Nadal was emotional after his defeat at the French Open first round, and reacted to the support from fans.

Tennis fans were left disappointed on Monday as Rafael Nadal crashed to a opening round defeat at the French Open. The Spaniard lost to Alexander Zverev, 6-3 7(7)-6(5) 6-3, in a match which had the likes of Novak Djokovic, Carlos Alcaraz and Iga Swiatek at the stands.

Rafael Nadal waves to the crowd.
Rafael Nadal waves to the crowd.

After the match, an emotional Nadal was applauded by fans, and he waved back at him, acknowledging their support.

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Also Read | 'If it is the last time, I enjoyed it': Rafael Nadal leaves possibility of French Open return alive after loss to Zverev

It turned out to be a one-sided affair as Zverev broke Nadal in the opening game, and the veteran surrendered his serve again late on to lose the first set. Nadal began the second set on a strong note, and got a 4-2 lead. But the German fought back in the 10th game, saving two breakpoints before doubling his advantage by winning a thrilling tiebreak.

Then in the third set, he took a 2-0 lead, but again gave it away as Zverev sealed a win.

Speaking after the match, he said, “The amount of energy.. It's difficult for me to talk. I don’t know if it’s gonna be the last time here in front of all of you. I’m not sure. But if it’s the last time I enjoyed it. The crowd was amazing during the whole week of preparation. Today the feelings I have are difficult to describe in words. For me it is so special to feel the love of the people in the place I love the most.”

"I enjoy playing a lot and traveling with my family. The body is feeling better than 2 months ago. Maybe in 2 months I say it’s enough. But it’s something I don’t feel yet. I hope to be back on this court for the Olympics. That motivates me. That’s going to be another chance," he added.

Meanwhile, Zverev said, "Thank you Rafa from all of the tennis world. It is such a great honour. I've watched Rafa play all my childhood and I was lucky enough to play him two times on this beautiful court. Today is not my moment, it is Rafa's moment."

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