Rafael Nadal To Play Washington, But Why?

by Sean Randall | July 13th, 2021, 12:29 am

In a curious move, Rafael Nadal will make his debut this summer August 2nd in Washington, D.C. The Spaniard has accepted a wildcard to play the event instead of the Olympics and likely instead of Canada which is all goes well will be held the following week.

Clearly Washington met his price tag to play (over $1M?) but is there a bigger motivation here?

At 35, is he just spreading the Rafa love to places where he hasn’t played? If so, I commend him and it’s something maybe Roger Federer should think about doing (and if Novak Djokovic completes the Calendar Slam this year, maybe next year he can just try to win titles where he’s never played before…lol!).

Or does he just want to court time after a long layoff?

Or is he trying to make a big run at the US Open, a tournament he’s won more times in the last five years than Djokovic, and get to 21 before the Serb?

Whatever it is — and it may be a mix of all three plus the money — good for him. It signals he’s healthy and keen on playing well on the hardcourts and intent on going on a deep run in New York. It also sends a message to Novak: I’m not going away.

I know Rafa’s still got that bad taste in his mouth from that French Open defeat, but I think he’d be ok trading that loss for a title in New York and in the process stopping Djokovic’s Calendar Quest. Just a hunch, he’d be pretty happy doing that. A lot of people would be.

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4 Comments for Rafael Nadal To Play Washington, But Why?

Alison hodge Says:

Welcome back Rafa, looking forward to seeing you back playing….

Amado Says:

Rafa seemed to have lost motivation and interest in tennis after the FO loss and he let Djokovic run away in the Slam race. Sometimes, I don’t agree with his decision and his team’s . Then , all of a sudden and so weird a decision , he will play in Washington for the first time in his career . He could have played Wimbledon and tried his luck . We all knew that he was hurt and playing with pain in his foot even before his Djokovic match in FO , but it had proven to be not that serious as it went away in a week . And now , Washington ? One positive aspect that I take from his decision to play Washington is his interest and motivation in tennis are clearly back . He still has a few more years in him .
Best of luck and best of health !

Bobbie Koon Says:

I just say welcome back Rafa. He needs to get some hard court play under his belt before the U.S. open. He’s not doing it for show. Very great person and should be treated that way.

Giles Says:

The question is not “ But Why” but “ Why Not”?
Vamos Champ!

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