There are many things that fans are curious about tennis legend Rafael Nadal, and one of them is his wife, Maria ‘Xisca’ Perelló, whom fans know very little about. Despite being one of the most decorated athletes in tennis, his wife still steals the spotlight occasionally.
Before getting married in October 2019, the couple dated for 14 years. Since then, they haven’t said much about their relationship. Rafel Nadal announced at a press conference that he and Xisca Perelló were expecting their first child in June 2022. The tennis player gave reporters an explanation for his propensity to steer clear of discussing his personal life.
So, who is Rafael Nadal’s wife? Let’s learn more about the beauty that captured the tennis athlete’s heart.
Who is Xisca Perelló?
Born on July 7, 1988, Maria Francisca Perelló, known as Xisca Perelló, is a Spanish-born business graduate. She was born and raised on the Spanish island of Mallorca. Before collaborating with Rafael Nadal to oversee his children’s sports charity, The Rafael Nadal Foundation, she held a position in the insurance industry.
How Did She Get to Know Rafael Nadal?
According to several reports, Rafael first got to know Xisca through family and friends. Xisca, then 17, and Rafael, 19, started dating in 2005 while both were University of the Balearic Islands students.
Even though it’s evident that Xisca and Rafaell had a strong relationship from the start, they have managed to keep their personal lives off the tennis court private. The only times Xisca has been spotted in public, aside from a few quick paparazzi pictures of the couple traveling together, are when she’s supporting her husband on the sidelines of his sporting events.
The Couple Got Married in October of 2019
More than ten years after dating, Nadal and Perelló exchanged vows on October 19, 2019. About 350 people witnessed their beautiful wedding ceremony at Mallorca’s La Fortaleza castle.
She donned a long-sleeved dress designed by Rosa Clara, a bridal designer from Barcelona, that was highlighted on the designer’s social media pages. The hand-embroidered fabric and jeweled neckline combined to create an exquisite look.
Rafael Revealed in June 2022 That They Are Expecting Their First Child
Rafael told the press, “If all goes well, I’m going to be a father.” The tennis player told reporters he hasn’t disclosed much about the situation because he doesn’t often talk about his personal life. Accompanying his 14th French Open victory earlier that month, the news comes at an exciting moment in his professional career.
She Gave Birth to a Boy
The couple welcomed their first child on October 8, 2022. Xisca Perelló gave birth to their son in Mallorca. Also, Two weeks had passed since Rafael Nadal’s heartfelt final match against longtime rival and friend Roger Federer when the baby was born.
She Helps Rafael at the Nadal Foundation
Xisca Perelló began working for the Rafa Nadal Foundation in April 2012. Before taking the CEO role in November 2019, the business graduate worked as a project manager. She serves as the board of trustees’ secretary as well.
According to their website, the foundation works with kids in Spain and India to help them discover the “transformative power of sport and education.” Rafael Nadal and his mother, Ana Maria Parera, founded the charity in 2008.
She Hardly Ever Goes to See Rafael Nadal Play
Rafael Nadal had Xisca Perelló’s support in the stands at major tournaments. However, she has purposefully avoided being present all the time. Xisca has stated that she didn’t want to divert Nadal’s attention from his goal of winning.
In May 2020, Perelló also said to Essentially Sports that, unlike her spouse, she did not choose fame and would remain out of the spotlight instead.
She attended the Australian Open for the third time in 2020. Nadal won the men’s singles championship following a five-hour match that the player described as “one of the most emotional matches of my tennis career.”
Xisca Once Cried During Rafael’s Match
Even the most demanding tennis fans had their hearts pulled during that moment. Xisca Perelló was heartbroken in the stands to see her husband’s body fail him when he needed to move on to the next round during Rafael Nadal’s match against American tennis player Mackenzie McDonald.
Nadal was injured in the second round and lost 6-4, 6-4, 7-5 in front of a stunned crowd at Melbourne’s Rod Laver Arena. It was painful for all the spectators to witness Rafael Nadal’s tournament run end, but Xisca Perelló took it the hardest.
She Supports Rafael Throughout His Journey
Despite being private, it’s not a surprise that Xisca gives 100% support to his husband. The former world No.1 also credits his wife for his success.
After welcoming their first child, the couple met some problems. Due to Xisca’s unidentified health issues, the couple experienced some difficult times at one point, especially during the US Open and the Laver Cup. At the same time, the Spaniard was subjected to harsh criticism by tennis fans for his decision to play tennis.
Xisca was hospitalized during the US Open due to some complications. In those pivotal moments, Rafael Nadal decided to play in the Laver Cup, going with 20-time Grand Slam winner Roger Federer for his final match. Xisca Perelló wholeheartedly supported his decision.
In a recent interview, the Spaniard talked candidly about his struggles over the past year, including having to make a difficult decision while his pregnant wife was in the hospital.
However, it wasn’t only his choice. Rafael Nadal recently thanked his wife for being a rock and motivating him to play in the US Open 2022. “Luckily, I have a woman who is brave. And she has always helped me in everything I could and more, and she has always encouraged me to continue,”
Rafael and Xisca’s relationship illustrates how mutual trust and support can fortify a bond. They also showed that public figures are free to choose to keep their private lives private and share only those details they feel comfortable disclosing with the media and their fans.
Xisca Perelló’s journey of being an outstanding athlete’s wife is inspirational. Though she chose to keep her privacy and that of their family private, she still supports Rafael Nadal. The two of them also give us hope that true love does exist and that you can always decide to keep your peace from the public’s prying eyes, no matter how chaotic it may be.