This stunning picture of Rafael Nadal, taken during an early round match this week in Rome against Victor Hanescu, recently caught our eye. It's a beautiful shot of the world's fastest player in motion and and we had just planned on posting it with minimal commentary (other than to comment on how still Nadal's head is when he's sprinting).
But then we thought it'd be cool to try and get in contact with the photographer to hear about how he got the shot. Luckily, Julian Finney of Getty Images was kind enough to quickly respond to our question with a brief description about how the shot came to light:
I shot this on a Canon Mark IV body with a 70-200mm lens at shutter speed 15th of second.
It was a night match so the light conditions were not ideal but went for a different shot than the normal action, player hits ball! So I notice Nadal's speed around the court is fast so I tried to show this in a pic. For Nadal to run for a drop shot meant running past the photo position left to right. This is showing a profile of his body at full speed. The players faces show pure determination when running for a drop shot so this is seen also in this shot. Nadal is my favorite player to photograph as he shows the most emotion, power, aggresion on a tennis court!
Julian will have another chance to photograph Nadal on Sunday, when Rafa plays in the final in Rome against fellow Spaniard David Ferrer.
Handshake at the net to Forty Deuce