RAFAEL NADAL is wearing the ‘most expensive watch ever worn on a tennis court’ at this year’s French Open.
The world No2, 34, received a brand-new custom timepiece from his sponsors at luxury watchmakers Richard Mille worth a staggering £780,000.
Rafael Nadal has a new watch worth a staggering £780,000 which matches his outfit at the French OpenCredit: The Mega Agency
The intricate design of the RM 27-04 even has a racket-like string effect across the faceCredit: Richard Mille
The watch, with “RAFA” embossed on the side, has a black case and face with an orange dial and light blue strap, which matches his Nike outfit for the tournament.
There is even a steel wire that criss-crosses across the face 38 times to create the effect of a tennis racket’s string pattern.
It is the first watch worn by a tennis player to top the $1million milestone.
The Swiss designers have only made 50 of the exclusive watch which marks the tenth anniversary of their partnership with Nadal, appropriately naming it the RM 27-04 Tourbillon Rafael Nadal.
On the Richard Mille website, the watch is described as “unique in more ways than one” and can withstand up to 12,000 Gs of force.
The description adds: “Its solidity and rigidity, coupled with its low thermal expansion coefficient and high resistance to humidity and temperature make it the ideal material for meeting the specifications of a watch intended to venture out on court with Rafael Nadal.”
Nadal was previously opposed to wearing a watch on court before the deal with Richard Mille in 2010 and now insists his timepieces are so light, at around 20 grams, he does not even notice them.
The Spaniard wears the watch on his right wrist – famously his natural stronger hand – but plays tennis with his left.
Time was flying as he blitz through the opening rounds at Roland GarrosCredit: The Mega Agency
The luxury timepiece is made by Swiss brand Richard Mille and is the most expensive watch a tennis player has worn on courtCredit: Richard Mille
Rafa’s custom watch has the personal touch of his name engraved down the sideCredit: Richard Mille
At the 2017 Australian Open, Rafa wore an earlier version of the Tourbillon, the RM 27-02, worth £720,000 before a Spanish-themed yellow and red RM 27-03 model at Wimbledon 2018.
But Nadal barely had a chance to check the time as he breezed past American Mackenzie McDonald in the French Open second round on Wednesday.
Seeking a record-equalling 20th Grand Slam – and 13th at Roland Garros – he lost just four games in a 6-1 6-0 6-3 demolition job, not even facing a break point.
Burger King hilariously tweeted the King of Clay after he dispatched their ‘rival’ McDonald.
The official account wrote: “@Rafael Nadal, you’re probably still hungry.”
Nadal wore a £550,000 Spanish-themed watch during Wimbledon in 2018
Nadal’s partnership with Richard Mille has been going for ten yearsCredit: PA:Empics Sport
Nadal is not the only tennis player to have worn Richard Mille watches with US Open runner-up Alexander Zverev also doing so.
In 2018, Zverev presented the RM67-02 watch, with a price tag of around £105k, at a show in Monte Carlo.
It has a weight of just 32 grams and is made of ultra-light and strong carbon quartz TPT making it sturdy too.
Away from tennis, Mille makes wrist bling for American golfer Bubba Watson, who won the 2012 Masters with one of his watches – with the brand getting plenty of attention as the cameras regularly zoomed in on the heavy-hitting star’s grip.
And decorated sprinter Yohan Blake wore a customised Tourbillon in Jamaica’s national colours during the 2012 Olympics in London.
Hollywood stars from film and music also love Mille’s work, with Rocky hero Sylvester Stallone, kung-fu king Jackie Chan and singer Pharrell Williams all decorating their famous wrists with his creations.
He will be hoping the new watch gets plenty of attention if he can be snapped posing with the trophy for a 13th timeCredit: EPA
Pharrell Williams and Yohan Blake have both shown off their mega-money timepiecesCredit: Getty Images
Bubba Watson gets plenty of attention on his hands as the golf star swings his driverCredit: Getty Images