Xisca Perelló and Rafa Nadal after the French Open this year. | Benoit Tessier


Rafa Nadal and his wife, Xisca Perelló, are expecting their first child later this month. A week ago, Nadal's sister, Maribel, said that they were both "very well". On Tuesday, it was the turn of Nadal's uncle, Toni, his former coach and now director of the Rafa Nadal Academy in Manacor, to speak.

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“They are both really looking forward to the birth. Xisca had to rest but it was nothing out of the ordinary." Rafa is "fine, excited and hoping that everything goes well". Asked what sort of a father his nephew will be, he said that he will be a great father but maybe not as great as he is a sportsman. He is, after all, one of the greatest sportsmen in the world.

As to combining his tennis career and new family life, Toni Nadal had no doubts that he will be able to do this. "He will do this totally normally. He's not a special guy, as all footballers and many others do this. When he first has to go to Australia, it will be hard to be away, but in the end it is the price you have to pay."