Quotes from Rafa

250 pages

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“I have no sense of humor about losing”
― quote from Rafa


“Si falta pasión no se encuentra la victoria”
― quote from Rafa


“However great your dedication, you never win anything on your own”
― quote from Rafa


“Se que cuando mi carrera acabe no seré un hombre feliz y quiero aprovecharla al máximo mientras dure.”
― quote from Rafa


“I have no sense of humor about losing.”
― quote from Rafa



“Humility is the recognition of your limitations, and it is from this understanding, and this understanding alone, that the drive comes to work hard at overcoming them.”
― quote from Rafa


“People sometimes exaggerate this business of humility. It’s a question simply of knowing who you are, where you are, and that the world will continue exactly as it is without you.”
― quote from Rafa


“The problem nowadays is that children have become too much the center of attention. Their parents, their families, everybody around them feels a need to put them on a pedestal. So much effort is invested in boosting their self-esteem that they are made to feel special in and of themselves, without having done anything.”
― quote from Rafa


“En cuanto a mí, aprendí una gran
lección con aquella victoria. Una lección
que Toni me había estado taladrando
desde hacía años, pero que hasta entonces
no había comprendido cuánto era cierta.
Aprendí que hay que perseverar siempre,
que por muy remotas que parezcan las
probabilidades de ganar, hay que pujar
hasta el límite de las propias fuerzas y
probar suerte. Aquel día en Melbourne me
di cuenta, con más claridad que nunca, de
que la clave de este deporte se encuentra
en la mente; y si se tiene la mente
despejada y fuerte, se puede vencer casi
cualquier obstáculo, incluido el dolor. La
mente pude vencer a la materia.”
― quote from Rafa


“And then, as I was bouncing the ball up and down on the grass, just about to wind up my body to serve, the umpire cut in. “Time violation: warning, Mr. Nadal.” I had apparently spent too long between points, gone over the legal limit of twenty seconds before I served—a rule that is enforced only rarely. But it’s a dangerous rule. Because once you’ve received that first warning, any subsequent violations lead to the deduction of points. My concentration had been put to the test. I could have made a scene. The crowd, I could tell, shared my indignation. But I knew, without having to give it a second thought, that to let my feelings show would do me no good. I’d risk losing that precious asset, my concentration. Besides, the momentum was with me and I was two points away from winning the second set. I put the umpire’s interruption immediately out of my mind and won the point with a terrific and, for me, very unusual shot.”
― quote from Rafa



“He has always been obedient, which is a sign of intelligence in a child because it shows you understand that your elders know better than you, that you respect their superior experience of the world.”
― quote from Rafa


“The rest of the family looked on with a bemusement that, in the case of Rafa’s mother, occasionally gave way to anger. His father, Sebastián, had his misgivings. His uncle Rafael wondered sometimes whether Toni was pushing his nephew too hard. His godfather, his mother’s brother, Juan, went so far as to say that what Toni was doing to the child amounted to “mental cruelty.”
― quote from Rafa


“The rest of the family looked on with a bemusement that, in the case of Rafa’s mother, occasionally gave way to anger. His father, Sebastián, had his misgivings. His uncle Rafael wondered sometimes whether Toni was pushing his nephew too hard. His godfather, his mother’s brother, Juan, went so far as to say that what Toni was doing to the child amounted to “mental cruelty.” But Toni was hard on Rafa because he knew Rafa could take it and would eventually thrive. He would not have applied the same principles, he insists, with a weaker child. The sense that perhaps he might have been right was what stopped the more doubtful members of his family from outright rebellion. One who did not doubt Toni was Miguel Ángel, the professional football player. Another disciple of the endurance principle, in which he believes with almost as much reverence as Toni himself, Miguel Ángel says that success for the elite sportsman rests on the capacity “to suffer,” even to enjoy suffering. “It means learning to accept that if you have to train two hours, you train two hours; if you have to train five, you train five; if you have to repeat an exercise fifty thousand times, you do it. That’s what separates the champions from the merely talented. And it’s all directly related to the winners’ mentality; at the same time as you are demonstrating endurance, your head becomes stronger.”
― quote from Rafa


“When Federer has these patches of utter brilliance, the only thing you can do is try and stay calm, wait for the storm to pass. There is not much you can do when the best player in history is seeing the ball as big as a football and hitting it with power, confidence, and laser accuracy.”
― quote from Rafa


“Sé
que si me las arreglo para seguir jugando
al máximo nivel hasta los veintinueve o
treinta años, habré tenido mucha suerte y
me sentiré contento.”
― quote from Rafa



“desafío consiste en escalar la cumbre de las propias posibilidades.”
― quote from Rafa


“«Esa fuerza mental, esa confianza y ese espíritu guerrero tan excepcionales que tiene son la otra cara de la inseguridad que lo impulsa»,”
― quote from Rafa


“That’s why just about every top professional athlete has been laid low by injury, sometimes a career-ending injury. There was a moment in my career when I seriously wondered whether I’d be able to continue competing at the top level. I play through pain much of the time, but I think all elite sports people do. All except Federer, at any rate. I’ve had to push and mold my body to adapt it to cope with the repetitive muscular stress that tennis forces on you, but he just seems to have been born to play the game. His physique—his DNA—seems perfectly adapted to tennis, rendering him immune to the injuries the rest of us are doomed to put up with.”
― quote from Rafa


“All his fears—be they of the dark, of thunderstorms, of the sea, or of the disastrous disruption of his family life—obey a compelling need. “He is a person who needs to be in control of everything,” Pérez says, “but since this is impossible, he invests all he has in controlling the one part of his life over which he has most command, Rafa the tennis player.”
― quote from Rafa


“I ran the risk of being mobbed for autographs. This is an occupational hazard that I accept and I try to take it with good grace. I can’t say “no” to people who ask me for my signature, even to the rude ones who just stick a piece of paper in front of me and don’t even say “please.” I’ll sign for them too, but what they won’t get from me is a smile. So going to the supermarket in Wimbledon, while an enjoyable distraction from the tension of competition, does have its pressures. The only place where I can go shopping in peace—where I can do anything like a normal person—is my home town of Manacor.”
― quote from Rafa



“If he hadn’t made me play without water that day, if he hadn’t singled me out for especially harsh treatment when I was in that group of little kids learning the game, if I hadn’t cried as I did at the injustice and abuse he heaped on me, maybe I would not be the player I am today. He always stressed the importance of endurance. “Endure, put up with whatever comes your way, learn to overcome weakness and pain, push yourself to breaking point but never cave in. If you don’t learn that lesson, you’ll never succeed as an elite athlete”: that was what he taught me.”
― quote from Rafa


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