Nadal and Federer – Striving Together

The Latin derivative of the word competition is competere to seek together. Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal epitomize this. To be a great champion you must have a worthy opponent to push you to greater heights. This is what these two men are doing. Here is excerpt from this week’s Sports Illustrated that is very revealing about these two men and should make look at the current issues in sport in a slightly different light:

… And here’s where their rivalry is different from most: There’s not a trace of animosity in it. Each man is relentlessly differential toward the other, dispensing more props than a Broadway stagehand. Says Nadal, “To me he is the best player.” Says Federer, “Trust me, I know how good Rafa is.”

Here them gush like this it becomes apparent they are not opposite after all. They were both raised in traditional European families that regard ego as a major character defect. Federer’s modesty is as characteristic as his silken backhand. ( He spent part of his last Christmas break visiting an orphanage in India) But Nadal’s not prima donna either. At the French Open the two-time defending champ was spotted sweeping the clay courts when he was done practicing. “We’re no better than anyone else,” says his uncle and coach, Toni Nadal.

There are many lessons here for our spoiled American superstars. You do not have to trash talk and beat down your opponent to be the best. Let your performance do the talking. Seek out and relish worthy competition, and honor them, that is the essence of true sport.


At 8/26/07, 11:26 AM, Blogger Joe P. said...

Do you think the American trash talking phenomenon starting with Mohammed Ali back in the early '70's...and does the hip hop culture continue to expolit it?

At 8/26/07, 11:21 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bradshaw and Foo, respect the wave, respect the field, respect the court, respect the person, respect the ref. respect the life.


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