Watch: Rafael Nadal left in splits after ballboy nicks racquet in Australian Open 2023 opening match at Rod Laver Arena
Rafael Nadal was in left in splits after a ballboy nicked his racquet during his Australian Open opening match at the Rod Laver Arena.
Currently up against Jack Draper in his ongoing Australian Open 2023 first round match at the Rod Laver Arena on Monday, Rafael Nadal will be aiming to bounce back after losing the second set and seal a win. The Spaniard won the first set 7-5, but then crashed to a 2-6 defeat in the second set.
The 22-time major singles champion had a unique first at the Rod Laver Arena as he couldn't find his racquet during the ongoing match. After failing to find his racquet, Nadal was left in splits after he figured out that a ball boy had nicked it. The Spaniard then pulled out another racquet from his bag.
Here is the video:
Nadal will be eyeing to win a record-extending 23rd Grand Slam singles title and is also the defending champion. He won his first Aus Open title in 2009, defeating Roger Federer in the final. In doing so, he became the first Spanish player to win the Aus Open, and it was also his first hard-court Grand Slam final. He has also had the second-longest match in the Grand Slam's history, beating countryman Fernando Verdasco 6-7(1), 6-4, 7-6(2), 6-7(1), 6-4 in the semi-finals of 2009 Australian Open. The match went for five hours and 14 minutes.
In 2022, Nadal won his second Aus Open title, defeating Russia's Daniil Medvedev in the final. He became the first man to win 21 Grand Slams and also broke a tie with Federer and Novak Djokovic (both had 20 at that time). Nadal also became the second player in the Open Era to win each major twice. In the Australian Open, he has a win-loss record of 76-15 (win percentage of 84). He has won the title in 17 attempts ad finished as runners-up in 2012, 2014, 2017 and 2019.