Nadal snubs the Queen

2010-06-25 07:58

London - Rafael Nadal admits he declined an invitation to meet Queen Elizabeth II because he wanted to focus on his Wimbledon second round match.

World number one Nadal was given the chance to meet the Queen when she visited the All England on Thursday for the first time since 1977.

But the Spaniard decided he couldn't risk upsetting his pre-match routine before a clash with Holland's Robin Haase.

While some of sport's biggest stars including Roger Federer, Serena Williams and Andy Murray spent time with the Queen during her visit, Nadal was concerned that he might be left with little room to prepare for the Haase clash - scheduled to be the last match on Centre Court - if he met the monarch and the matches before his finished quickly.

"It was disappointing for me but the Wimbledon club knows I have my routines before the match," Nadal said.

"I knew it was going to be a very difficult match. I had to practice around then, so it was impossible for me (to meet the Queen).

"I have my routines. Before the match, it is very difficult when you don't know when you're going to play. You have the third match but if some injury happens there, you are on court before.

"I had to practice at that time, so it was impossible for me to meet her at that moment."

Nadal had hoped the Queen would stay to watch his match but she left after Murray's victory - denying the Spaniard a belated chance to impress the sovereign.

"Seriously, I thought the Queen was going to be at my match and I would love to have the chance to meet her after the match. But it wasn't possible because I think the Queen left before," Nadal said.

"For me it was disappointing. I was excited to meet her but it was a very important match for me too."

Nadal, a five-time French Open champion, was adamant he meant no disrespect to the Queen, but had no intention of apologising as he doesn't want to do anything to damage his bid to regain the Wimbledon title he won in 2008.

"I am playing in Wimbledon. It is not a joke. I love this tournament," he added.

"I have a lot of respect for the Queen. I have a lot of respect for this tournament.

"It was always my dream to play here. It is a match-day for me so I have my things to do and I try to do what I think is best to win the match."

In the event, Nadal produced a spluttering display against the unheralded Haase and fell two sets to one behind before recovering to win 5-7, 6-2, 3-6, 6-0, 6-3.

Nadal claimed he was well aware how dangerous Haase could be on grass and he hopes the experience of surviving a tough match so early in the tournament will serve him well in the latter stages.

"I feel more confident after the match. Before the match, I could tell he was going to be a very difficult opponent because he's a big server," he said.

"On this surface, it is very difficult to stop him. I'm very happy to be in the third round because this was a difficult match.

"Everybody prefers to win in three sets, but it's not possible a lot of times, especially on this surface because all depends on a few points."


  • Margaret Hompes - 2010-06-25 08:30

    I agree with Nadal. He is a Spaniard, the Queen is not his queen. He is a professional doing his job. The Queen is important to the British.

  • Liwu - 2010-06-25 08:42

    I admire him. Quite focused and loves his tennis. He's got his priorities straight.

  • Rafa fan - 2010-06-25 08:47

    Rafa has no reason whatsover to apologise. He is possibly the most focussed, committed tennis player on the circuit and his preperation for matches is very important to him. Just focus on your tennis, Rafa, you do not owe any favours to anybody

  • Skubbe - 2010-06-25 08:47

    Good to see that for some sportsmen, it is more about the sport than the side-shows! Lekke Roggie!

  • wikki wikki - 2010-06-25 08:49

    Once again, a misleading headline ... journo's should think carefully about the seeds they plant within public perception. Rafa is one of the most humble players out there ... the word "snub" does not feature within his vocabulary.

  • Gert - 2010-06-25 08:55

    Good for you Nadal. Who is the Queen anyway, other than a person who was born in a so-called Royal family. What do that family achieve on their own and what do they contribute to the economy of Britain - they rather live their lavish lives on the back of the average tax payers. It is good that nadal decided to focus on what was important for him, and not bow before so called royalty.

  • Wally - 2010-06-25 09:05

    Yes, Nadal, practice makes perfect!!

  • Queen of what? - 2010-06-25 09:12

    Good for you Nadal! Who is the queen anyway? There is nothing special about that family and in all probability there nevel will be. Nadal worked hard to become one of the world's best. The royal parasites are born into a priveleged existence. And in spite of receiving everything of the best they have never risen above mediocrity.

  • TruBlu - 2010-06-25 09:13

    Typical Spanish FAG

  • Stan - 2010-06-25 09:25

    Good on you Rafael, a true professional! You have your own Queen of Spain anyway! Just because the old geriatric decides to shuffle into Wimbledon, you as a top sportsman, do not have to give up your routine to appease her! She was only there to offer some 'support' to Murray (or was she low on strawbs and cream at her digs?!). She did not stay for your match. Most likely had to walk the Corgi or something equally important! You are the true champs, along with Rodger etc, and we respect you and thank you for the entertainment! You have achieved, you were not born into it!!!! You did not 'snub' Liz, you simply got your priorities right!! A true professional!

  • Banana - 2010-06-25 09:28

    @wikki wikki - Technically to turn down an invitation is a snub, so the headline is spot on and the point of a headline is to draw the reader in...which worked in your case and mine. @Gert - The queen is the queen - enough said. I agree with the consensus here Nadal is at Wimbledon to play and win a tennis tournament. The Queen although iconic for the British, is not his queen. All hail another Nadal/Federer final.

  • Gruntfuttock of Africa - 2010-06-25 09:29

    Rafa is an excellent player who gets his priorities correct. Why has the Queen avoided this very important sporting event for 33 years? British royalty is important these days to only a very small number of Brits.

  • tennis fanatic - 2010-06-25 09:30

    Nadal is well respected for his tennis prowness and a gentleman in the tennis need for an apology. It took the Queen 33 years to realise that Wimbeldon was played in her country

  • Wallace - 2010-06-25 09:35

    The Journo here is at fault... headline could have read "Wimbledon schedule deny's Nadal opportunity to meet the Queen". I respect his commitment and its clear he regrets his schedule not allowing a meeting. Gert, they contribute to the economy to ensuring (through their political influence) that Britain punches well above its weight in the world. They shouldnt always have their super power status, the monarchy helps continue that. I am personally not a fan, but I understand their contribution.

  • Tartan - 2010-06-25 09:42

    Honestly, "needs to concentrate!" Nadal is so busy pulling his nickers out of his ass, which is why he cannot concentrate on his playing!! I wonder why nobody has told him to either buy bigger ones or go comando.

  • CJ - 2010-06-25 09:44

    Her Majesty should have stuck around to watch you play Rafa and you could have met her's too bad she left....

  • Jaco - 2010-06-25 10:16

    How can one not respect Nadal for his commitment to his trade. Viva Rafa!

  • Miz Molly - 2010-06-25 10:30

    @Stan and Queen of What. The Queen of England, is the queen of the country where Wimbledon happens to be played. Maybe he should just play in SPain and get done. Did he snub the queen of SPain when she went to watch him play at Roland Garros?

  • John - 2010-06-25 11:08

    Gert and queen of what. From your comments you are both identify as the true parasites of society who have no knowledge of the impact the royal family have on the economy of UK.Its evident that you have no knowledge of the subject. You probably meet frequently in the dole most likely dont qualify to pay tax either so why comment. Fact is Nadal did the right thing. I'm not British and not a royalist,but recognise parasites when they climb out of their boxes.

  • @ Miz Molly - 2010-06-25 11:13

    That has got to be the most unintelligent response to a subject. You obviously have no idea about sport.

  • Lily White - 2010-06-25 11:22

    Rafa explained very well why he couldn't go to meet the queen. That's it. He has a routine that he performs every time he plays. If she wanted to meet him that much, she could have stayed and watched his match. Instead she watched Murray's match. No problem. The queen of Spain wanted to meet Nadal and stayed to watch his match. No problem. This is not to say that Nadal is conceited. He is just there to play tennis, not meet the queen.

  • Marc - 2010-06-25 11:50

    Having a queen in the 21st century is a joke, anyway. What does she actually do?

  • Paddy - 2010-06-25 12:32

    Good on ya Rafa!

  • Crispy_Duck - 2010-06-25 15:31

    She's an inbred symbol of global colonialism and oppression. She serves no purpose other that to drain the resources of her country. Why on earth should anyone show her respect of feel privileged if she "grants" you an audience. Please...royalty is the weakest form of political control. The sooner that kind of nonsense gets eradicated from the earth the better....

  • H Stephens - 2010-06-25 16:24

    That's the coolest news ever. More kudos to Rafa Nadal for knowing where his priorities lie. Now he's even more of a heroe to me.

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