Professional tennis player Rafael Nadal has put his name on a new endorsement contract with PokerStars. The agreement is the biggest sponsorship deal between an online poker room and a sports star to date.
PokerStars has today confirmed the signing of one of the best professional tennis players in recent years, Rafa Nadal, as the site's newest Team SportStars member.
The deal has been rumored to be on its way for a while already, but no confirmation has come out from either part until today.
The announcement of the Nadal signing immediately caught the attention of global poker and mainstream media, with several major outlets reporting on the deal.
"It's no secret that I love to compete and try my very best in everything, whether that's tennis, golf or video games," Nadal said about the deal according to the PokerStars Blog
"When I discovered the game of poker, I chose to join PokerStars because they understand what it takes to be the best and associate themselves with the qualities of champions. I'm very happy to be working with them," he added.
Home of many poker professionals
Some of the largest tournaments
Many satellites to televised events
Highly sophisticated software
With 17 ATP Masters titles, 11 Grand Slam victories , 4 Davis Cup trophies and an olympic gold medal, Nadal is one of the most successful athletes of all time.
The 26-year-old star just a few weeks ago won the French Open in Paris, and will now prepare himself for Wimbledon as he takes on a new role as a sponsored poker pro.
As part of the promotion to welcome Nadal on Team SportStars, PokerStars has also launched a special "Help Nadal"
website, where fans can give Nadal tips
about the game to kickstart his playing career.
The Mallorca-born Spaniard will begin in his new job as a PokerStars poster child immediately, joining fellow tennis player Boris Becker, Dutch hockey player Fatima Moreira De Melo and Swedish skiing legend Marcus Hellner on the SportStars team.