Poker Juggernaut Rafael Nadal Beats World Again, Eyes 2nd Ronaldo Duel

NEIL8696EPT10VIERafaNadalNeil Stoddart
Rafa Nadal (Photo: Neil Stoddart)

Much has been made over the course of Rafael Nadal's tennis career abut his legendary competitiveness.

When he signed on as a PokerStars Ambassador back in 2012 while recovering from a foot injury, that competitive fire was offered as proof his poker side project was much than a lark to make some extra sponsorship money.

Turns out there's something to it - and there's a lot more to Nadal's level of poker commitment than meets the eye.

Playing in his second livestreamed battle against all comers this past Monday Nadal emerged triumphant yet again -- and this time with an even greater margin of victory.

Nadal Prevails 31-27

Having your game watched live -- with hole cards showing no less -- is less-than-appealing for even the best of poker pros.

When it's the whole world watching looking for every little glaring mistake in your game, it's even tougher.

Nadal wasn't deterred at all though and battled through 58 heads-up Zoom matches this time around in front of the cameras and two PokerStars commentators.

Making things even trickier he answered fan questions as he played.

Despite falling into a 5-0 hole Nadal held his ground when he needed to, made some solid plays and emerged victorius at the end of an hour for his second victory against "the world."

Nadal won his first challenge against all comers 20-18 back in March. Watch the ful livestream of the recent challenge below:


Nadal Preps for Live Ronaldo Duel

Not just sticking to the online arena, Nadal showed he had the making of some live skills as well last December.

Playing in the six-player European Poker Tour Prague Charity Challenge, Rafa won the event outright beating Brazilian soccer icon Ronaldo and PokerStars Pro Daniel Negreanu along the way.

Nadal and Ronaldo will square off again on November 6 in London, this time in a heads-up match called "The Duel."

Ronaldo
Ronaldo awaits.

Details of the terms of the match are still to be determined but the event will be streamed live and broadcast on PokerStars.tv.

"It was my first live poker tournament when I last played against Ronaldo," Nadal says," and one year later I'm more confident with my skill level.

"I really enjoy playing poker and the challenge of learning as quickly as possible, so I can't wait to get back to training on my game and to play against Ronaldo."

For more details, check the PokerStars blog.

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