A psychologist who specialises in obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), has reportedly warned against an indifferent attitude or mockery towards Rafael Nadal's habitual on-court behaviour, saying that it may cause him 'distress' as he also seems to be suffering from the disabling mental illness.
Dr Christopher Mogan felt that Jim Courier and Lleyton Hewitt were 'mocking' in their commentary the Spaniard's on-court antics, which include lining up water bottles with the labels facing the end he is about to play from, refusing to step on lines in between points, and running his thumb and finger down his nose before each point.
According to the Sydney Morning Herald, Mogan felt that the world No.1 'seems to have a psychological disorder which is being ridiculed', adding that by those routines, the patients of the disorder try and control anxiety and if they do not, then they get stressed.
Mogan also said that the cameras highlighted Nadal's behaviour in a systematic manner he had not noticed at previous Australian Opens, and he was also disturbed by Hewitt relaying the story of Nadal putting his shirt on and taking it off over and over again before he left the locker room.
However, Mogan said it was possible Nadal was displaying 'perfectly controlled behaviour that belongs only on the tennis court', although he added that the extent of Nadal's 'disease' shows that his behavior on court is translated into his everyday life too.
But a source close to Nadal dismissed Mogan's concerns, saying that Nadal is normal and the routines are meant to help his game, adding that the Spaniard has great respect for Courier and Hewitt, and felt they always treated him well.