Rafael Nadal auctions off Grand Slam memorabilia to raise crisis relief funds

Riley Morgan
Sports Reporter
Rafael Nadal is auctioning off his shirt he wore in the 2019 French Open final to help raise funds for the Spanish Red Cross to combat Covid-19. (Getty Images)

Rafael Nadal has been helping raise funds for the Spanish Red Cross and has joined Tour de France winner to auction off special memorabilia to help raise funds to combat the coronavirus pandemic.

The 19-time Grand Slam champ has been driving a campaign to help raise funds and he just announced he would auction off his shirt he wore in the 2019 French Open final with proceeds going to the Spanish Red Cross.

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At the same time, seven-times grand tour winner Alberto Contador, who retired in 2017, announced he would also auction his bike from the 2011 Giro d'Italia and Tour de France.

"Hello everyone, we are still struggling with this COVID-19 and I want to make one more effort. I will auction this original Giro-Tour 2011 bike, which is very special for me. The proceeds will go to #cruzrojaresponde," Contador said.

The shirt Rafael Nadal was wearing when he won the 2019 French Open at Roland Garros on June 09, 2019 in Paris, France. (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)

The 37-year-old, who won the Tour de France in 2007 and 2009, was stripped of his 2011 Giro d'Italia title following a positive test for clenbuterol on the 2010 Tour.

In addition to his Tour titles, Contador won the Giro in 2008 and 2015 and the Tour of Spain in 2008, 2012 and 2014.

The bike, initially listed for auction with a price of 2,500 euros ($2,716), was at 12,400 euros at 1500 GMT on Wednesday.

Nadal’s campaign to help combat Covid-19

Nadal and Gasol have targeted raising 11 million euros ($20 million) in the nation that has suffered the second-highest total of coronavirus deaths.

“The Spanish people have never let us athletes down. We are what we are because of them,” Nadal said.

“We cannot let them down now,” said the World No.2 tennis player.

World number two Nadal was looking to win a record-extending 13th French Open title this year, which would have put him level with Roger Federer on 20 Grand Slam singles titles.

However, the year's second Grand Slam was postponed from its May start to Sept. 20-Oct. 4 due to the pandemic.

Some 146,690 people have been infected by the coronavirus in Spain and 14,555 have died.

With Reuters