John Carlin, Rafael Nadal




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Rafa: My Story is the autobiographical account of a great man and great sportsman. Written with journalist JohnCarlin, the book looks back at the key moments that have defined his career as a world class tennis champion. A true sportsman who chooses to let his raw talent, dedication and humility win through, Nadal attributes his success to his family, who have always encouraged him and taught him right from wrong. Nadal is an extraordinary competitor whose ferocity on court is made even more remarkable by his grace off it. This book takes us to the heart of his childhood, his growth as a player, and his incredible career.

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Analysis and key concepts


Nadal: the young tennis player who was destined to become a champion


Uncle Toni was Nadal’s greatest ally, coaching him in sports and spirituality


The importance of having an understanding family who supports you whether you win or lose


Athletes must learn to deal with pain


A winning mindset is what makes the difference




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Many useful tips to:

  • Get to know the story of Rafael Nadal, the man behind the tennis champion.
  • Find out how to train to become a winner.
  • Understand what it feels like to win after having given your all.

John Carlin is a British journalist and author who writes about sports and politics. He has written articles for various newspapers such as The New York Times, The Independent, Wired and The Observer, and several biographies including Playing the Enemy: Nelson Mandela, and Chase your Shadow: the trials of Oscar Pistorius. His other book about Nelson Mandela entitled The Game that Made a Nation, inspired the Clint Eastwood film, Invictus.

Rafael Nadal, was born in 1986 in Majorca, Spain. Having won many of the most respected titles in the tennis world, he is recognised today as one of the best tennis players and athletes of all time. Nadal is also nicknamed the "left-handed man from Manacor", and has been ranked the world singles number 1 by the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) five times, as well as spending 209 weeks as the top seed. At 18, he was the youngest player in history to win the Davis Cup; at 19 he was the teenager with the most championship titles, and at 24, he was the youngest player to complete the Grand Slam and the Golden Slam on the Open tennis circuit. Nadal is an honourable athlete who has made great strides as a human being during the course of his own career as well as being an inspiration to many young and aspiring athletes. In his hometown of Manacor, he founded a tennis academy, the Rafa Nadal Tennis Academy.

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