Wimbledon 2010: Proud To Be a Rafael Nadal Fan

Sudeshna BanerjeeAnalyst IJuly 4, 2010

LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 04:  Rafael Nadal of Spain holds the Championship trophy after winning the Men's Singles Final match against Tomas Berdych of Czech Republic on Day Thirteen of the Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Championships at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club on July 4, 2010 in London, England.  (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
Julian Finney/Getty Images

It hasn't sunk in yet.

Last year, it was just so hard. That fourth round match at French Open after which I believed Rafa will come back and do it at Wimby.

Then that horrifying news of him withdrawing from Wimby. To me, it was even more painful than that loss. I remember some people were mocking Rafa for that. Not just him, even his fans were being targeted.

It was one of the worst times being a Rafa fan. How many people will understand the sheer pain of seeing your hero, who gave you such priceless moments the previous year at Wimby, not being able to play even a single match at the hallowed grass-court Slam? Only those who experience it will know how much it hurts!

Obituaries were being written all over the Internet. I was simply shocked to see some of the worthless articles being written about him, completely writing him off even on this site!

His game was being torn apart. He was being criticised endlessly. End of the genius called Rafael Nadal was in sight for those fools.

And then the revelation of the personal turmoil he was going through. It was as if every single thing was against our Champ. That reflected in his game. Add the injuries. Add the horror at TMC. It was misery all over!

With the turn of the new year, we expected him to turn over a new leaf. It was almost heading that way until that unexpected retirement at Australian Open and him consequently being out of action again! We knew that was perhaps the kick he badly needed!

A time to assess your game, your calendar and most of all your knees.

He came back and started showing signs of rejuvenation at North America. The first sign of sense came when he withdrew from Barca. And then there was no looking back!

For all those who thought Rafa was buried, here is the champ resurrecting himself from the grave! For those who dared to speak ill of him, here is the slap right back on your face! For all of us, who fervently prayed for him and believed in him no matter what, here are the tears of joy for us!

It was such an emotional victory at French Open. A rare sight to see him shed tears was indeed a rare treat for us. That strengthened the champ. It brought back his fire, his will, his indomitable spirit, and his relentless energy. It was a clear indication of what lay ahead for all his poor opponents at Wimby!

Time to forget what we all have been through. Time to bask in the glory that our hero so rightly deserves! This is the reason why we love you, Rafa. You can be down but can never be out! You are a born champion and our inspiration! No better time to say ''PROUD TO BE A RAFA FAN''


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