Italy’s rising star Jannik Sinner will cherish the two-weeks spent in quarantine more than any other player. Happily, the 19-year-old Italian trained with Spanish World No. 2 Rafael Nadal in Adelaide ahead of the Australian Open 2021.
On the final day of the quarantine, the Sofia 2020 winner shared a glimpse of his training session with the Spaniard. In the video, the duo is seen enjoying themselves without a tennis racket or a tennis ball. Instead, they are playing soccer on the court with a softball.
While their tennis expertise is indisputable, their proficiency in soccer is also clearly visible. It is also a sign for the other players that they are ready for the Australian summer.
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Sinner thanks Rafael Nadal and team and Tennis Australia with the soccer skills video
The opportunity knocked on the young Italian’s door when he qualified for the quarterfinals of the French Open last year. He met the eventual champion, Rafael Nadal, in that match, and despite losing, he displayed what he’s got.
This landed Jannik Sinner the opportunity to train with the 34-year-old in the Australian Open 2021 bubble. And for the looks of the video, he sure spent one of his best hours training there.
Sinner tweeted, “Great 2 weeks in Adelaide! What an experience. Thanks, Tennis Australia. So grateful to Rafael Nadal and his team for having me practice with them. Amazing to spend time learning from one of the greats. Learnt some cheeky football skills too, thanks Team Rafa!”
Before they leave the town for Melbourne Park, the pair will participate in an exhibition event on January 29. The line-up for the event includes Novak Djokovic, Dominic Thiem, Serena Williams, Ashleigh Barty, Simona Halep, Naomi Osaka, Venus Williams, and Irina-Camelia Begu.
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Nadal and Jannik Sinner’s chances at Australian Open 2021
When it comes to the Italian teenager and the Mallorcan, their energy and their commitment to every point are similar. Therefore, they both will be a solid threat in the first Grand Slam tournament of the year.
Even though Sinner has less experience, he is quick and his extensive reach will give him an edge over his opponents. On the other side, Rafa will be anxious to overcome his 11 years drought at the Happy Slam.
However, the Spaniard will first represent his country at the ATP Cup 2021. Hopefully, the 2021 season for both Jannik and Rafa will turn out to be as cool as their soccer skills.
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