“More Than That He Will Not Play”: Best Friend Predicts How Long Rafael Nadal Will Play


Rafael Nadal

Bartomeu Tomeu Salvá Vidal is one of Rafa’s best friends. He and Rafael Nadal reached two ATP pairs finals alongside each other. King of clay is none less than a ‘brother’ to him. Since the very first day, he has been working in Academia de Manacor. Although he also dreamt of having a great career as a tennis player only.

For Tomeu, it was challenging to take the pressure and handle the comparison, which was done vigorously with his ‘brother’ Rafael Nadal.

Moreover, this Sunday, Vidal spoke to the media at the Lisboa Belém Open. He expressed his thoughts on being continuously compared and how difficult it was to handle many things simultaneously.


Tomeu said, “I grew up with him. We always live very close. We are very close friends, like brothers. Our friendship goes beyond tennis. We became Spain’s numbers 1 and 2 in our class. We were twice world champions for youth. And We grew up together.”

“I Stopped Playing At The Age Of 21” : Tomeu Salvá

As the years surpassed, Rafael continued to shine and reached into the top 100 ATP. However, Tomeu realized Rafael was way more years ahead of him and stopped playing at 21.

The 33-years-old Spaniard continued, “I couldn’t handle the pressure and demand. I always grew up with Rafa and then I realized that at some point he was already many years ahead of me.” 

“It was tough for me. It was healthy envy, but it ended up making me impatient and giving up. I could have been an interesting player. Rafa even invited me to travel with him and play pairs, but that was not what he wanted for my life”, Tomeu added.


Tomeu chose to pursue his career as a young coach, which he’s delighted to do. He’s coaching Jaume Munar for now, and both of them share a very healthy bond which they hope to last for longer.

Talking about Rafael and his game, he said, “Rafa will not last forever. I hope he will still play 3, 4 or 5 years, but more than that he will not play. But this new generation with Jaume, Davidovich, Pedro Martínez, Alcaraz, is very good.” he concluded.

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