Nadal is widely regarded as the greatest clay-court player of all time. As a result of his excellence and success on this surface, he has been called “The King of Clay.” His evolution into an all-court threat established him as one of the greatest tennis players in history.
The tennis legend has won 15 Grand Slam singles titles, the 2008 Olympic gold medal in singles, an all-time record of 30 ATP World Tour Masters 1000 titles, tied with Novak Djokovic, and 18 ATP World Tour 500 tournaments. He was also a member of the winning Spain Davis Cup team in 2004, 2008, 2009, and 2011.
With all the near superhuman accomplishments, it’s hard to believe that he’s still just as liable as the next person to indecent behaviour. The two-time Wimbledon champion has recently come under fire on social media over his conduct in his match against Gilles Muller. He may have been entirely preoccupied with the match and it’s hard to blame him given his eventual five-set marathon defeat. At any rate, we’ll let you decide.
Nadal was long into his inevitable defeat when he sat down to take a quick rest at a changeover. He pulled out an energy gel to help boost his fitness levels before getting back on the court.
After pulling off the cap of the gel, he calls the ball-boy standing across from him over and hands him the cap to discard in the garbage bin. The issue is that the bin was positioned directly next to Nadal’s seat.
In fact, the bin was so close to Nadal, that the ball-boy had to reach across Nadal to throw out the piece of garbage. This fact either didn’t occur to Nadal, or he just couldn’t be bothered to throw it out himself.
In any case, people saw this and were not impressed. As a side note though, you have to give it up to the internet for their power of observation as the whole ordeal was about 10 seconds long.
Many called Nadal’s actions lazy and some of the reactions on Twitter have been downright angry in their tone. Most people were just flat-out perplexed and couldn’t believe what they had witnessed.
Some Twitter users even went so far as to call him out and tell him what a better option might’ve been. Apparently, all of Twitter decided to band together to hold Nadal accountable for his behaviour.
A few, however, came to the tennis star’s defence. They claim that it’s not unusual for tennis players to not throw away their own garbage. Not sure if that excuses Nadal or makes it worse knowing it’s common practice.
After the whole ordeal, old footage surfaced of the now 32-year-old doing the exact same thing during a past tournament in Queens. Ball boys are actually instructed to make a player’s life as easy as possible including disposing of food. But not even this fact could save Nadal from public scorn.