ALTHOUGH the decision to award five-time Mutua Madrid Open champion Rafael Nadal with Madrid’s highest honour the Grand Cross of the Order of the Second of May was made in November, it was only recently that he was able to travel there to collect it.
Reportedly, he broke off from a short Caribbean holiday with his wife and sister to fly to Madrid where he was officially presented with the Grand Cross by the President of the Madrid Community Isabel Diaz Ayuso on behalf of the governing council on December 3.
She praised him, saying “We have before us the greatest sportsman of all time, with values such as humility, effort, discipline and respect for rivals.”
He is just the second tennis player, after Manolo Santana to receive this award and he accepted it with pride and thanked the people of Madrid for the honour.
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