Rafael Nadal at the Rafa Nadal Tennis Centre. | Alonso Cupul


Tennis player Rafael Nadal and Basketball player Pau Gasol have launched a new campaign called “CruzRoja Responde” or "Red Cross Responds" to raise money for coronavirus sufferers.

The two sportsmen plan to unite all Spanish athletes to help them raise 11 million euros for more than 1,350,000 people who are fighting Covid-19.

In two messages on social media networks, Nadal and Gasol say they’re confident that "uniting everyone from the sports world in Spain, in moments that are hard, sad and difficult to explain, will be possible. Rafa also admits in the message that he is feeling the impact of the pandemic.

"Honestly, I have been at home for a few days thinking about how can I help and contribute my grain of sand in this situation that is totally new for everyone," he says. "After giving it a lot of thought I came to the conclusion that you, the Spanish people, have never failed this country’s athletes. We are who we are, in large part, thanks to your support and now is the moment when athletes cannot fail.”

The Majorcan tennis ace says he called his friend Pau to talk about starting a solidarity campaign.

“He agreed that it was time to start this initiative and we are both confident that all Spanish sports will unite,” said Rafa.

Pau Gasol, who’s played for many, many NBA teams, including the LA Lakers, Chicago Bulls, and San Antonio Spurs, says the world is facing an unprecedented situation.

"We are all suffering the consequences of this terrible pandemic to a greater or lesser extent, above all, those of you on the front line, the health professionals who are taking care of people who have contracted the virus and are totally overwhelmed,” says Gasol. "Today, along with my great friend Rafa Nadal, we have started a campaign to raise funds for the “Red Cross Responds” project aimed at people most affected by the coronavirus.”

The basketball player admits that the goal set by him and Rafa is very ambitious.