Rafael Nadal’s famed uncle, Toni Nadal, has joined the camp of rising Canadian star Felix Auger-Aliassime.
The 20-year-old Auger-Aliassime recently did a trial run at Rafa’s academy in Spain in the off season, and a deal has now been struck. Toni will be there alongside former ATP player Federic Fontang who has coached Auger-Aliassime for four years and will continue in that lead role.
Toni Nadal coached Rafa until early 2017 when he made the decision to spend more time at the Academy while Rafa went with Carlos Moya. Toni will now help Felix but should he face Rafa in a tournament, he would not be in the stadium.
“If we have to play with Rafa, I will not be on either of the two benches out of respect for both players and because I am still the director of the Academy, I continue to work for him and I am Rafael’s uncle,” he said via translation to Marca. “I have a special affection as usual for my nephew. But if he has to lose to someone who is with Felix. I don’t stop being Rafael’s uncle, I have been linked with him for many years. I hope that in the future Felix will be number one in the world. For now, he has to improve.
“I saw him play for the first time with a boy from our Academy, Jaume Munar. He was 16 or 17 years old and I sensed that it could be one of the best in the world. Now he has to work to confirm it.”
Both Felix and Rafa will be in the Monte Carlo event which begins next week.
Welcome aboard Toni 🙌🏽 pic.twitter.com/BGH0HIapUr
— Félix AugerAliassime (@felixtennis) April 8, 2021
El Director de la #RafaNadalAcademy by Movistar Toni Nadal ha viajado a Montecarlo, donde iniciará una nueva colaboración con el equipo técnico de @felixtennis. 💥🇨🇦💪🏼 pic.twitter.com/WP9eq5rAxH
— Rafa Nadal Academy by Movistar (@rnadalacademy) April 8, 2021
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