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Rafael Nadal’s grand gesture as he left Wimbledon

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Rafael Nadal leaving Wimbledon, saying goodbye to the workers of the All England Tennis Club

Dolors Massot - published on 07/16/22

The star tennis player continues to set an example, on and off the court.

Earlier this month, Rafael Nadal showed himself to be a true gentleman with a simple gesture that may seem small but is significant.

On Thursday, July 7, he had made public his withdrawal from Wimbledon due to a muscle injury, specifically an abdominal tear. It was physically impossible for him to serve with his left hand. His medical team recommended him to leave the court to avoid a major injury.

Nadal gave a press conference during which he revealed his conviction that withdrawing from the competition was the best option, without hiding his sadness at being forced to back out.

The following day, he packed his bags and slung his backpack over his shoulder. He left his room and walked to the door of the building where he was staying. He looked calm but serious. Then, he saw workers from the All England Tennis Club in the lobby of the building. They’re the people you don’t see; they don’t stand out and they’re not famous. Nadal decided there was one more thing he wanted to do before going out the door: greet them all one by one. It wasn’t just that he passed them on his way out; he went out of his way to meet them.

Here you can see how it happened:

He hugged one worker, shook hands with others, then went to the transportation counter where the comings and goings of the tennis court are managed. He showed his appreciation for those who attend to the stars of Wimbledon, taking pictures with whoever asked him.

Upon leaving Wimbledon, he lost his chance to win the historic prize, but in the eyes of everyone it’s clear that he’s a champion in values: simplicity, selflessness, strength, joy in adversity, self-sacrifice, gratitude.

That “small” but heartfelt gesture reveals the formation that Nadal received from his family and how he is demanding with himself in big and small things every minute.

Nadal is aware of his situation and the difficulties he faces. “Thank you. Hope to see you next year. Let’s see. Thank you so much,” he was heard to say.

Now he’s taking some days to recover. The word is that it could be between 4 and 6 weeks. This will also give him time to enjoy the beginnings of his fatherhood: His wife Mery (Xisca) Perelló is pregnant and already showing.

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