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10th Jul 2017

Rafael Nadal’s reaction to defeat brings stunning ovation from Wimbledon crowd

A lovely moment

Simon Lloyd

You wouldn’t have blamed Rafael Nadal if he’d wanted to make a swift departure from Wimbledon on Monday evening.

The Spaniard, a two-time champion in 2008 and 2010, had found himself two sets down to Luxembourg’s Gilles Müller. Despite this, the fourth seed battled back to take the third and fourth sets. At this point, most watching the game – both on television and in the Court One crowd – would have backed Nadal to get the job done in the final set and book his spot in the quarter finals.

That, however, wasn’t to be.

Not only did he go on to lose the final set (13-15), he did so after a staggering two hours and fifteen minutes.

As he returned to his chair to pack away his racket, many would have expected a bitterly disappointed Nadal to head straight for the changing rooms. Instead, he chose to remain, waiting for Müller so that he could accompany his opponent off the court. Not only that, he even took time to sign a few autographs before eventually making an exit.

As the footage below shows, his reaction to the defeat brought a huge ovation from those that were there to see it.

A perfect example of being gracious in defeat…