Nadal uncertain over Roland Garros appearance

April 25, 2024 5:43 am

[Source: Reuters]

Spain’s Rafael Nadal said on Wednesday that he is not sure if he will be able to play at next month’s French Open after pushing through the pain barrier in his comeback from injury.

The 37-year-old, a 22-time Grand Slam champion, said that he is far from being in top form and that he is only playing against American Darwin Blanch in the first round of the Madrid Open on Thursday as a personal sacrifice.

Nadal, who has said he expects to retire after the 2024 season, returned to competition in Brisbane in January, after almost a year sidelined with a hip flexor injury.

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However, after winning his first two matches in the tournament, Nadal lost in three sets to Australian Jordan Thompson in the quarter-finals.

The gruelling contest appeared to take its toll on the Spaniard who, trailing 1-4 in the final set, took a medical timeout to get treatment on his upper left leg.

He did not play an ATP event until making a winning return last week in Barcelona, with a first-round victory over Flavio Cobolli, only to fall a day later in a 7-5 6-1 second-round defeat by Australian fourth seed Alex de Minaur.