“Never Wash My Hands Again”: Paula Badosa Reminisces First Interaction With Rafael Nadal as a Teenager

Published 12/12/2021, 1:53 PM EST
Tennis – French Open – Roland Garros, Paris, France – June 7, 2021 Spain’s Rafael Nadal celebrates winning his fourth round match against Italy’s Jannik Sinner REUTERS/Christian Hartmann


20-time Grand Slam champion Rafael Nadal has inspired scores of people with his skills on-court and his conduct off the court. Especially youngsters from Spain, who look up to Nadal in many ways.

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Paula Badosa opens up on her first interaction with Rafael Nadal

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Recently, Paula Badosa, who had a stellar run this year on the WTA tour, recollects her first memory with the Spaniard in an interview to Spanish radio program, El Larguero.

I was 13 or 14 at the Godo(Barcelona Open) tournament. He shook my hand. I thought to myself that I will never wash my hands again. He’s a great inspiration.”

During the same interview, Badosa also talked about a unique aspect of Nadal.

Rafa has one thing that, for me, makes him unique: he is capable of moving people by playing tennis”.

Aug 5, 2021; Washington, DC, USA; Rafael Nadal of Spain hits a forehand against Lloyd Harris of South Africa (not pictured) during the Citi Open at Rock Creek Park Tennis Center. Mandatory Credit: Scott Taetsch-USA TODAY Sports

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It is evident that Badosa is a huge Nadal fan, just like millions across the world. Looking back at her season this year, the Spaniard found her rhythm during the European clay-court season.

Badosa enjoyed huge success on WTA tour this year

She reached the semi-finals at events in Madrid and Serbia. Also, Badosa managed to reach her first-ever major quarter-final at Roland Garros. She lost the match to Tamara Zidansek in a three-set thriller.

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At the US hard-court summer, the Spanish player reached the quarter-finals at Cincinnati Masters and clinched her first-ever Indian Wells title. During her title run, Badosa defeated top-notch players like Victoria Azarenka, Angelique Kerber, Ons Jabeur, etc.,

Tennis – WTA Tour Finals – Panamerican Tennis Center, Guadalajara, Mexico – November 13, 2021 Spain’s Paula Badosa celebrates winning her group stage match against Greece’s Maria Sakkari REUTERS/Henry Romero

As a result of her performances in the latter half of this year, Badosa qualified for the year-end championships held in Guadalajara, Mexico. At her maiden event, the Spaniard performed exceedingly well by reaching the semis.

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In the final four, Badosa was defeated by compatriot Garbine Muguruza, who went on to win the title. With phenomenal performances this year, Paula Badosa looks to continue the winning momentum in Australia next year as well.

DIVE DEEPER

Rafael Nadal Adds Rio Olympics Doubles Partner to His Coaching Team Ahead of 2022 Australian Open

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Sagar Ashtakoula

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Sagar Ashtakoula is a Tennis author at EssentiallySports. He has been following the sport since 2007. Sagar has completed his graduation in Electronics and Communication Engineering.

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