Rafael Nadal had a lot on his plate on Thursday at the Rio Olympics 2016. This is probably how he must have felt before the day began.
— Chris Goldsmith (@TheTennisTalker) August 10, 2016
It started with a third-round singles match against France’s Gilles Simon, who the Spaniard beat in straight sets. He continued with a semifinal doubles match with Marc Lopez. The victory assured the duo of a silver medal in the Rio Olympics. Nadal called it a day in the mixed-doubles match with Garbiñe Muguruza, from which he was compelled to withdraw after a grueling day.
So it wasn’t surprising that he got very emotional after victory. His celebration with friend and doubles partner Marc Lopez could melt the coldest of hearts.
— RafaNadalFANS (@RafaNadalFANS) August 11, 2016
Nadal, who’s usually known for his aggressive style, couldn’t hold back his tears. It clearly showed how much the victory meant to him.
— Stroppa Del (@stroppadel) August 11, 2016
Physical and mental pressure weighed on Nadal against Simon. The champion proved himself by sailing through the victory, despite playing for the first time in two and a half months due to a wrist injury.
Nadal will be against hometown favourite Thomaz Bellucci in the men's singles quarterfinals. Right after that match, Nadal will be back on court to with Marc Lopez in a gold medal doubles match against Romania's Florin Mergea and Horia Tecau.