Nike Air Courtballistic 2.3 “Neon Nadal”

Nike release a new colorway of the Nike Air Courtballistec 2.3, carrying the nickname “Neon Nadal”.

“Officially listed as Hot Lime/Black-Nano Grey-Black, the shoe takes on a bright fluorescent green style covering the full body of the shoe. Also pairing up with the release is a separate White/Black-Hot Lime-Nano Grey colorway which resembles the original Nike Tech Challenge 3.”

The release celebrates the recent 5th win of world number one Rafael Nadal at the French Open.

Nike Air Courtballistec 2.3 “Neon Nadal”

Nike Air Courtballistic 2.3 “Neon Nadal”

Nike Air Courtballistic 2.3 “Neon Nadal”

Nike Air Courtballistic 2.3 “Neon Nadal”

Nike Air Courtballistic 2.3 “Neon Nadal”

Wimbledon Trivia

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– Dark green and purple are the traditional Wimbledon colours, but from 2006 the officials, ball boys and girls were outfitted in new navy blue and cream uniforms designed by Ralph Lauren.

– “Middle Sunday” is traditionally a rest day. However, rain has forced play on Middle Sunday three times in Wimbledon history: 1991, 1997 and 2004. Each time, Wimbledon staged a “People’s Sunday”, with unreserved and inexpensive tickets. All about the first Middle Sunday in 1991.

Henman Hill is an area on the grounds of the All England Club officially known as Aorangi Terrace. People without showcourts tickets can watch tennis matches on a giant television screen at the side of number one court. During Tim Henman‘s playing days, the area was the focal point of Henmania, where British tennis fans would fanatically support Henman.

– Last British woman to win Wimbledon is Virginia Wade in 1977. All about Virginia Wade’s triumph.

– Last British man to win Wimbledon was Fred Perry in 1936, last runner-up was Bunny Austin in 1938.
A bronze statue of Fred Perry was erected at the All England Club in 1984 to mark the 50th anniversary of his first singles championship.

Fred Perry statue

– During World War II, a bomb ripped through Centre Court and 1200 seats were damaged. Play resumed in 1946 but it wasn’t until 1949 that the area was back into shape.

– The trophies are presented by the President of the All England Club, The Duke of Kent, and by his sister, Princess Alexandra.

– Wimbledon is the only Grand Slam tournament to feature a Royal Box. The first Royal to visit Wimbledon was Crown Princess Stephanie of Austria in 1895. In 1926, Prince Albert, Duke of York (who later became King George VI and father of Queen Elizabeth II) entered the doubles event with his Royal Air Force tennis partner, Wing commander Louis Grieg.
Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II has visited Wimbledon only twice, to see Virginia Wade triumph in 1977, and in 2010. In 2008, after his epic win against Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal climbed up to the Royal Box, to greet Crown Prince Felipe and Crown Princess Felizia of Spain.

Rafael Nadal

Rafael Nadal

– The quotation above the player’s entrance to Centre Court is an extract from the poem if by Rudyard Kipling:

“If you can meet with triumph and disaster and treat those two impostors just the same”

– Wimbledon will host the Olympic tennis events in 2012.

Rafael Nadal - Nike

What a strange Roland Garros this year, with very few intense battles, insipid semifinals but a flamboyant first time winner.

The Good:

– Francesca Schiavone:

Francesca Schiavone

– Sam Stosur

Sam Stosur

– Robin Soderling: Ex-bad boy Robin Soderling finished runner-up for the second year in a row. He once again impressed the tennis world with his amazing win over defending champion Roger Federer. But unfortunately for him, he didn’t really get into the final against Rafa: “I didn’t play as good as I did last year. I didn’t serve so well. I wasn’t hitting the ball as clean. You know, I had some chances in the beginning, but I didn’t take them. And then he won the first and then played really well in the second, so then, you know, that’s about… “

– Jurgen Melzer: The big surprise in the men’s draw. More famous for his girlfriends (Myskina, Cibulkova…) than for his game, Melzer reached the semifinals of a major for the first time of his career after his surprising wins over David Ferrer and Novak Djokovic.

The Bad:

– French players: What a disaster! The best frenchman was Jo-Wilfried Tsonga who was forced to retire in the 4th round against Mikhail Youzhny. Monfils was beaten by Fognini, Gasquet by Murray. There was not a single in the second week. A disaster.

– Svetlana Kuznetsova: Just 3 words: waste of talent.

– Dinara Safina: The worst performance of this French Open is without a doubt the loss of former number one Dinara Safina to Kimiko Date. Safina lead by one set and 2 breaks, and then 4-1 in the third set, but she self imploded and offered the match to the japanese veteran. It was Date’s first Grand Slam victory since the 1996 US Open.

The King:

Rafael Nadal

L'Equipe - Rafael Nadal

A really emotional victory for Rafa who dominated Robin Soderling in straight sets 6-4 6-2 6-4. Nadal captured his fifth Roland Garros crown, his 7th Grand Slam title.

He remains undefeated on clay this year, and he also reclaimed the number one ranking, denying his biggest rival Roger Federer the all time record for weeks at No. 1

Rafa’s Grand Slam titles:
You can click on the column to sort by year, championship, surface…

Year Championship Surface Opponent in the final Score in the final
2005 French Open Clay Mariano Puerta 6–7(6), 6–3, 6–1, 7–5
2006 French Open (2) Clay Roger Federer 1–6, 6–1, 6–4, 7–6(4)
2007 French Open (3) Clay Roger Federer 6–3, 4–6, 6–3, 6–4
2008 French Open (4) Clay Roger Federer 6–1, 6–3, 6–0
2008 Wimbledon Grass Roger Federer 6–4, 6–4, 6–7(5), 6–7(8), 9–7
2009 Australian Open Hard Roger Federer 7–5, 3–6, 7–6(3), 3–6, 6–2
2010 French Open Clay Robin Soderling 6-4, 6-2, 6-4