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Rafael Nadal's biography contains an artistic tennis reference, which is a masterpiece.

  • You will never catch this detail in the contents of Rafael Nadal's autobiography.
Modified 25 Aug 2018, 06:30 IST

Rafa: My Story - Rafael Nadal with John Carlin
Rafa: My Story - Rafael Nadal with John Carlin

I do not think that I need to give an introduction to Rafael Nadal, thanks to his over-achievement in the world of Tennis. Well, the King of Clay, the 17 Grand slams man, Rafael Nadal, came out with his autobiography (partly) in 2011, with John Carlin as a co-writer with him on it. This book was a total eye-opener for many of his fans and followers all over the world, as it gave everyone an insight about someone who has been as passionate and ferocious on the tennis court, as a horse is, in his races. In the book, Rafael & John talk about various parts of Rafa's life, and the highlight of the book is the coverage of each and every feeling Nadal felt before, during and after his first Wimbledon Championship win (2008) in a final against the best ever tennis player this world had, Roger Federer. This final has also been referred by many, as one of the best finals ever played. Apart from the same, it covers every phase of his life and how it shaped his tennis career, all the people involved, and so much detail about the psychology and philosophy with which Nadal has been leaving the world in awe, over the years.

2013 French Open - Day Fifteen
2013 French Open - Day Fifteen

I bought the book, way back in 2014, but recently I started reading it again, just because I wanted to learn about handling feelings during difficult phases in life, which the book rightly covers referring to the infamous injury prone career Nadal has had. And what I discovered in the book was something which left me awestruck.

There are 9 chapters in the book, and each chapter has 2 parts. One written by Rafael Nadal and the other by John Carlin. This pattern stays until the end of the book. Just the way a tennis match goes, one serve of yours and the other of your counterpart. In his parts, Rafa tells his story in his way, beautifully describing the 2008 Wimbledon Final and the parts of his life dear to him, and John Carlin, in his parts, describes Nadal's life from a third person point of view, having spent a lot of time with him and the people close to him. Just the way, in a tennis match, your serve is you dictating the game and having an upper-hand, and your opponent's serve is uncontrollable from your end and in that serve, the opponent expresses his game.

This small detail caught my eye at 3 am at night, and I was very much awestruck by it. I have read many sports biographies and autobiographies but none of them has this level of detail and relatedness to the sport which the protagonist in the book plays. I think it was a very very clever and a masterpiece of a move to organise the flow of the book in sort of a tennis match, with one being the Nadal's serve and his words, and the other being John Carlin's.

Well, the book wasn't written on a clay court for sure, but still, Nadal clinches a win in this one too.

Published 25 Aug 2018, 06:30 IST
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