The life of a top professional tennis player, especially one as young and eligible as Rafael Nadal, is a life that is filled with foreign travel, immense sponsorship deals, fame, fortune and all the trappings that go with it. Any other male sports superstar in Nadal’s position would likely be living the lifestyle of a pampered playboy, but for Nadal there is one person who is keeping him grounded.
Maria Francisca Perello has been Rafael Nadal’s girlfriend for over 7 years, having met the Spanish tennis ace in the small town where they both grew up. In a story that seems more like the romantic reminisces of a young and unknown couple anywhere in the world, the two have been committed and dedicated to each other since they started dating. For all the glamour that Nadal’s lifestyle brings Maria has never been one to revel in the attention and even goes far to remain out of the spotlight, quietly supporting her partner from court side as he continues in amazing ascension into being a true professional tennis legend.
As dignified and level-headed as Federer’s partner – Mirka – only perhaps not quite so outspoken, Maria Perello doesn’t behave in the way that we expect the wives and girlfriends of top sports stars to behave. Instead she supports him through his highs and lows, but remains detached from the artificial world of modern celebrities. Both Nadal and Perello are respectful and humble individuals, Nadal’s strong personality is evident in every tennis game he plays but he is yet to indulge in the type of tantrums on court that we might expect a player of his standing to do, and probably never will. But it’s their sweet and, dare we say it, normal relationship that keeps this star athlete with his feet on the ground.
Befitting someone who prefers to remain out of the spotlight, we don’t know much about Perello and she very rarely gives interviews. However we do know that she is just an ordinary girl with a full-time job in a Mallorca insurance company who just happens to be the partner of one of the world’s greatest tennis players. And from what we’ve seen of their relationship so far, it’s something that they are both more than happy with.
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