After ten years in the top-10, Rafael Nadal nearly fell out in 2015 due to injuries and a lack of improvement in his form. In 2016, the Spaniard was unable to unseat the leaders from their positions, winning just 39 matches overall for his lowest total since 2004 while also taking home two trophies in Monte Carlo and Barcelona!
Rafa had to leave Roland Garros before his match against Marcel Granollers in the third round due to a wrist injury. He wasn’t allowed to compete until the second week of August and the Rio Olympics, where he was prepared to give it his all and contend for a medal.
With a good draw, Nadal advanced to the singles semifinals, but he was unable to bring home a medal for Spain. After playing Juan Martin del Potro for three hours and eight minutes in the semifinals, Rafa lost in the decisive tie break. He then suffered a painful defeat against Kei Nishikori in the match for the bronze medal.
After winning the gold medal in doubles with his dear friend Marc Lopez, the Beijing Olympics gold champion in singles still managed to leave Brazil in style. The pair have won a few tournaments at Doha and Indian Wells between 2009 and 2011.
They had a sixth-place seeding in Rio and were hoping to find some old mojo and a chance to win a medal. After defeating Juan Martin del Potro and Maximo Gonzalez to advance to the quarterfinals, they first defeated Jean-Julien Rojer and Robin Haase.
At the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio, Rafael Nadal and Marc Lopez won the doubles gold medal.
The Spanish team defeated Oliver Marach and Alexander Peya 6-3, 6-1 to get into the semifinals, where they will face Daniel Nestor and Vasek Pospisil.
Rafa and Marc won two tie breaks in a very close match to claim a medal and set up the gold medal match against Florin Mergea and Horia Tecau of Romania. After a fierce struggle, Nadal and Lopez prevailed 6-2, 3-6, 6-4 with a late break in the match’s last game, sparking a raucous celebration and intense emotions over one of their biggest career victories.
Due to an injury, Nadal missed the Olympics in Tokyo last year. He hopes to recover in time to play in Paris in 2024.