Rafael Nadal, Normally a Cool Customer, Once Openly Revealed Hatred Against a Chair Umpire – ‘I Can’t Take It Anymore’

Published 10/21/2022, 7:10 AM EDT
Tennis – French Open – Roland Garros, Paris, France – May 29, 2022 Spain’s Rafael Nadal reacts during his fourth round match against Canada’s Felix Auger-Aliassime REUTERS/Dylan Martinez TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY

In modern tennis, it is unusual to see a player who can keep their emotions in check while competing. Several players frequently engage in verbal spats while on the court. One player, though, who has rarely displayed wild emotions on the court in his two-decade career is the Spanish legend Rafael Nadal.

Rafael Nadal serves as a tremendous role model for future tennis players. With each tournament triumph, his reputation grows exponentially. But there was a time on the court when the 22-time Grand Slam winner lost his temper and portrayed extreme verbal-animosity toward a chair umpire.

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Rafael Nadal once lost his cool and yelled at the chair umpire

Back in 2015, the 14-time French Open winner Rafael Nadal lost to Fabio Fognini in the semifinals of the Rio Open 2015 with a score of 6-1, 2-6, 5-7. This particular loss ended Nadal’s 52-match winning streak on clay courts.

During the match, Nadal accidentally wore his shorts the wrong way around. Due to this, he asked the permission of the chair umpire, Carlos Bernardes, to leave the court to change his sweat-soaked shorts. However, Bernardes denied the request. 

READ MORE: Intriguing Details About Rafael Nadal’s Staggering $10 Million Watch Collection

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Later, a frustrated Nadal, who suffered a wardrobe malfunction, became extremely angry and subsequently vented his anger towards the umpire. On the whole circuit, there is no one like you. Listen to me, I’m going to tell you something, I’m going to ask you to never referee me again because I can’t take it anymore. Seriously, I can’t take it anymore, said Nadal to Mr. Carlos Bernardes. Eventually, David Ferrer of Spain beat Fognini, 6–2, 6–3 in the final.

Nadal had previously gotten into a dispute with the same chair umpire 

In 2010, Nadal faced Tomas Berdych in the ATP Finals. The Spaniard was serving for the first set at 6-5 when Nadal challenged a shot by Berdych. However, Nadal raised a finger and challenged the call to which chair umpire Carlos Bernardes agreed. Hawkeye proved that the call was right, and the ball had caught the baseline.

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Although Nadal served the ball back into play, the chair umpire awarded the point to the Czech player. It’s safe to assume that Nadal wasn’t pleased with the chair umpire’s decision since he immediately began arguing with him. But in the end, Nadal won the match and walked out smiling.

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Sampreet Shetty

184 articles

Sampreet Shetty is a Tennis author at EssentiallySports. After earning his Bachelor’s degree in engineering, he started his professional career as a content writer. Sampreet started following tennis after witnessing Andy Murray's exploits on the ATP tour during his heyday.

Edited By: Tony Thomas

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