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Maria Francisca Perello and Rafael Nadal© Shutterstock

Besotted Rafael Nadal poses for incredibly rare photo with beautiful wife Maria Francisca Perello

The tennis champion will play in the Paris Olympics and Laver Cup

Sharnaz Shahid
Deputy Online Editor
July 9, 2024
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Rafael Nadal is relishing some quality time with his wife, Maria Francisca Perello, ahead of his upcoming appearance at the Paris Olympics later this month and the seventh edition of the Laver Cup in Berlin this September. 

On Monday, the 38-year-old tennis legend - who is anticipated to retire this year - delighted fans by sharing an exceptionally rare photo of himself and Maria on Instagram.

View post on Instagram

The stunning image captured the couple looking deeply in love as they posed against the breathtaking backdrop of a Greek sunset. They have no doubt been spending time at his academy, Rafa Nadal Tennis Centre, at Sani Resort.

In the caption, the tennis player simply added the heart hands emoji which prompted a flurry of messages from fans. "The cutest couple!" wrote one, while another added: "What a beautiful photo of the loveliest couple!!!" 

A third post read: "My heart just melted into a puddle, the most gorgeous couple, my favourite King Rafa and Mery... Thank you for sharing this beautiful pic with us Rafa, love you and miss you." 

The post comes weeks after Rafael crashed out of the first round of the French Open during his match with Alexander Zverev in what may be his final French Open appearance. 

Rafa Nadal and wife Maria Francisca Perello hold award© Getty
Rafa with his wife Maria Francisca Perello

He was supported by his wife Maria and their son Rafael Jr. The couple, who tied the knot in 2019 in a romantic ceremony in Majorca after 14 years of dating, welcomed their son in October 2022. 

Spanish publication Diario de Mallorca confirmed the news at the time, stating: "Both the mother and her baby, born at 37 weeks, are doing well. The birth took place in a private clinic on the island, where Mery had to remain under observation and complete rest in the last few weeks." 

Xisca Perello laughing clapping© Getty
The couple are doting parents to one son

Although the tennis player prefers to keep his personal life private, Rafael had previously shared his thoughts on becoming a father. 

Before the birth, the double Olympic champion told reporters: "If all goes well, I'm going to be a father. I'm not accustomed to discussing my private life. We live more calmly with a lower profile. I don't expect my life to change much because of it."

Tennis players and their famous exes

Grigor Dimitrov and Nicole Scherzinger

The tennis player started dating the Pussycat Dolls singer in late 2015 and confirmed the relationship a year later. However, the couple's hectic schedules made it difficult to spend time together and they parted ways in 2019. 

Serena Williams and Drake

Tennis queen Serena and Canadian rapper Drake were rumoured to have had an on-and-off relationship from 2011 to 2015. They first met at a charity tennis tournament in 2011 and began dating shortly after. 

Naomi Osaka and Cordae

The Japanese tennis player has been romantically linked to rapper Cordae since 2019, and in July 2023, they welcomed a baby girl named Shai. However, it seems the couple have sparked split rumours with the tennis star removing all traces of Cordae from her Instagram page. 

Caroline Wozniacki and Rory McIlroy

This sports couple started dating in 2010 and actually got engaged three years later. In 2014, Rory was said to have called things off in a brief three-minute phone call to Caroline after they sent their wedding invites. Caroline has since married American basketball player David Lee. 

Andy Roddick and Mandy Moore

The American star dated actress Mandy Moore in the early 2000s before he married wife Brooklyn Decker. They met on the set of the rom-com How to Deal in 2003. One year after the tennis champion took home the U.S. Open championship title, the former couple called it quits in 2004. 

Andre Agassi and Brooke Shields

The Hollywood star was married to former world number one tennis player Andre Agassi from 1997 until 1999, when they split largely because of his addiction to crystal meth. They dated for four years before they wed.

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