Umpire fails to properly check injured Rafael Nadal after car accident


, PARIS, Nov 10 – Maverick Rafael Nadal referred to the classic film Whiplash, after he weathered a three-car pile-up in round one of the Paris Masters.

But out of all the horrific crashes in the 80th French Open, this was probably not the worst one he’s seen in professional tennis.


Nadal – not a naturally clumsy man – landed in a ditch on his leg and back as he scampered away from what appeared to be a forehand winner at Roland Garros in 2010.

And one of his rivals, David Ferrer, had the perfect catch of his own in a five-set quarter-final at Wimbledon in 2010.

But this was different, if almost as farcical as Jean-Philippe Huget’s moment of despair in the under-18 Paris Open semi-finals in 1997, when he hit his head on the fencing and lay motionless for more than a minute.

Nadal was trying to volley a drop shot when a two-car accident next door led to panic, a collision and a crash.

The 30-year-old Spaniard changed direction, raced down the line and clouted a nerveless winner past Donald Young before being called over by the umpire to check on his condition.

And there was no serious damage, he later said, because “I pushed his car. I had no control.”

Nadal had described this week as “like a funeral”, but it has been a good one in terms of form, form where he has only dropped one set so far, and form where he was surprisingly being ranked at his lowest ever ranking, number 47.

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