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Shirt swaps in tennis? Has Rafael Nadal's beaten opponent Pedro Cachin started a trend?

Will we see shirt-swapping in tennis after Pedro Cachin asked the legendary Rafael Nadal for a souvenir at the Madrid Open?; you can watch over 80 tournaments a year, including the US Open, exclusively live on Sky Sports Tennis

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Pedro Cachin asked Rafael Nadal for his shirt after being beaten by him at the Madrid Open

We see it in many other sports including football and NBA but will we be seeing shirt-swapping become part and parcel at the end of a tennis match? Rafael Nadal's beaten opponent Pedro Cachin may just have started a trend.

After taking more than three hours of Nadal's time on court, Cachin wanted one more thing from the 22-time Grand Slam champion - his shirt!

Cachin, an Argentine with one career ATP title, stretched the 37-year-old over three sets.

The Spaniard won their third-round match in the Caja Magica but Cachin was eager to meet him again at the net.

Rafael Nadal of Spain and Pedro Cachin of Argentina embrace following their Men's Round of 32 match during day seven of the Mutua Madrid Open at La Caja Magica on April 29, 2024 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
Image: The day wasn't a total loss for world No 91 Cachin at La Caja Magica

"Thank you very much, you fulfilled my dream," Cachin said. "I don't know if you can but I want to ask you, can I keep your shirt or towel or something?

"Yes, I'll give it to you, of course," Nadal responded. "Good luck with everything."

Nadal shook hands with the chair umpire and waved to the crowd before going to his bag. He grabbed one of his match shirts and a bandanna and gave them to Cachin.

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For Cachin, the day wasn't a total loss.

Nadal is a legend of the sport and the clay court GOAT but could this moment at the net start a trend in tennis?

During his press-conference, Cachin said: "I told him what I always wanted to tell him: I fulfilled a dream. I will hang the shirt with a photo of the game, I will try to get it signed. I am a normal person, every dream I fulfil I like to take with me a memory. It fills my soul."

Pedro Cachin on Instagram
Image: Cachin shared a photo of Nadal's shirt on social media shortly after their match

He later shared a photo of the shirt on Instagram stories after their match in Madrid. "Thank you Rafael Nadal, it was a dream."

Journalists have criticised Nadal's shirt gifting but fans have called it sportsmanship at its finest. Should Cachin have waited until they got into the locker room?

In a social media spat with British sports broadcaster David Law, Nick Kyrgios took to X to explain his reasons why it wasn't an issue for him, saying: "Why? NBA players, soccer players do it all the time? It's a memory, an experience that took a life time of work and that less than 1 per cent of humans get to. You wouldn't understand."

World No 1 Iga Swiatek says she would have asked for Nadal shirt too if she ever played him in a match, saying: "If I would play against Rafa, for sure I would ask for a shirt. But that's not possible [smiling]."

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Highlights as Jiri Lehecka ended Nadal's dreams at the Madrid Open

Czech Jiri Lehecka, who ended Nadal's dreams of a fairy-tale ending in the Spanish capital, said: "If you're playing a match and thinking about asking the guy to give you something, why are you there?

"I totally respect what Pedro did. It's absolutely fine for me. I have zero problem with it. But for me I would not do such a thing."

Roy Keane
Image: Pundit Roy Keane is not a fan of shirt-swapping

Sky Sports pundit Roy Keane once famously blasted Eden Hazard for swapping shirts with Angel Di Maria at half-time of Chelsea's Champions League last 16 defeat to Paris Saint-Germain in 2016.

"It's bad enough at the end of the game, but half-time in a big game, the two guys swapping shirts? It's shocking," said the former Manchester United captain.

What would Keane make of Cachin's moment at the net?

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Former Spurs manager Harry Redknapp was 'surprised' by the players swapping their shirts after the 6-1 thrashing at Newcastle last April

What's coming up on Sky Sports Tennis?

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Find out all the ways to watch tennis on Sky Sports, including the US Open, ATP and WTA tours

In the run-up to the second Grand Slam of 2024 - the French Open at Roland Garros from May 26 - you can watch all of the biggest tennis stars in action live on Sky Sports as they compete across the clay-court season.

  • Internazionali BNL d'Italia in Rome (ATP and WTA Masters 1000) - May 7-19
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  • Morocco Open (WTA 250) - May 20-26

How to watch play on Sky Sports Tennis

The stars of tennis will appear on the new Sky Sports Tennis channel every day
Image: The stars of tennis will appear on the new Sky Sports Tennis channel every day

Sky Sports has confirmed a new home for tennis in the UK and Ireland, with Sky Sports Tennis on Sky and NOW, making tennis content available all day, every day for fans.

Sky Sports will broadcast more live tennis than anywhere else, bringing over 4,000 matches from more than 80 tournaments a year on the ATP and WTA Tours, as well as full coverage of the US Open, all exclusively live.

Non-Sky subscribers can stream live matches with a NOW Sports Day and Month Membership, via Sky Sports Tennis, Sky Sports Arena, and Sky Sports Mix channels.

For further access, fans will also be able to follow their favourite players and gain deeper insights from both Tours via Sky Sports News, the Sky Sports app, on and via Sky Sports social channels.

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