KEY POINTS

  • Rafael Nadal won his second round match against Federico Delbonis, 6-3, 7-6, 6-1
  • Rafael Nadal accidentally hit a ball kid and apologized with a kiss
  • The internet had a variety of reactions from his sweet action 

Rafael Nadal cruised through his second round matchup in the Australian Open with a 6-3, 7-6, 6-1 win over Argentinean Federico Delbonis. The two have only faced each other four times in their careers with Rafael Nadal winning all of those matchups.

Although the world number one seed displayed a flawless show of tennis, it was a stray forehand return that made the headlines. It was the third set of the match where Rafael Nadal was up 4-1 and he was on the receiving end of the court. Delbonis struck a wide serve that Rafael Nadal blasted straight to the head of a ball kid. With a loud thud followed by a collective gasp from everyone, play was momentarily stopped.

Showing immediate concern, both players approached her to check if she was okay. While the ball kid was giving the thumbs up to them, Rafael Nadal still apologized by giving her a kiss on the cheek.

After the match, Rafael Nadal shared that it was one of the scarier moments he’s had on the tennis court. "For her, probably it was not a good moment," he said. "I was so scared for her, honestly."

Considering it was a down the line shot at full force straight into the head, Rafael Nadal saw the bravery of the ball kid. “She’s a super brave girl,” he told the Australian Open crowd.

The Internet, of course, blew up with posts sharing all around social media. There were varied reactions from people, giving their thoughts on the situation. All in all, Rafael Nadal was able to make everyone talking.

With the abundance of heartwarming takes, there were also some that had a slight hint of jealousy. 

Beyond the sweet display on the court, Rafael Nadal is still on the pace of chasing history. The left-handed player currently has 19 Grand Slam titles and is only one championship away from tying Roger Federer. Interestingly he only has one Australian Open title and is seeking to gain another one after 11 years. He’s set to face fellow Spaniard Pablo Carreño Busta in his third-round matchup.

Spain's Rafael Nadal is guaranteed to finish the year as the world number one Spain's Rafael Nadal is guaranteed to finish the year as the world number one Photo: AFP / Adrian DENNIS