Rafael Nadal has dropped a huge hint towards a potential shock retirement from tennis due to a chronic left foot injury that has ruled him out since August
Rafael Nadal has dropped a shock hint towards potentially retiring from the game, after revealing he ‘doesn’t know when he will play again’ due to injury.
The 20-time major winner has not played competitive tennis since August due to a chronic left foot problem, with his last performance coming in a round of 16 defeat at the Washington Open to Lloyd Harris.
It has been a year to forget for the Spanish great as he was forced to miss both Wimbledon and the Olympic Games in Tokyo due to his ongoing injury problems, as well as the recent US Open.
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Following a tough 2021, the Spaniard has given on update on his fitness, worrying some fans with his comments.
Discussing when he may return, Nadal said: “I want to recover from this injury in good condition.
“I don’t know when I will play again, I work a lot every day, I follow a specific plan with a marked roadmap and with very clear objectives.
“I will not say what those objectives are, because there are always things that I can’t control 100%.
“But inside my head I’m clear on what my objectives are and I trust that things will follow a positive course.”
When he has been back on the court Nadal also agonisingly missed out on yet another French Open victory – a tournament in which he has been so dominant – after losing out to Novak Djokovic in a tense semi-final at Roland Garros.
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The battle on the French clay was one of the very best between the two greats, as Djokovic eventually edged out the 13-time Roland Garros champion 3-1 after four hours of high quality tennis.
Following his semi-final in Paris Nadal reflected on the loss and revealed that whilst he felt he gave his best efforts, his performance was not up to the level of his shining opponent.
He commented: “That’s sport, you know. Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose. I tried to give my best. Probably was not my best day out there. Even if I thought that I put in a lot of effort.
“I mean, the position on the shots haven’t been that effective tonight. Against a player like him that takes the ball early.
“You are not able to take him out of his positions, then it is very difficult, no?
He went on to add that he believes mistakes throughout the match were the costing factor: “These kind of mistakes can happen. But if you want to win, you can’t make these mistakes. So that’s it. Well done for him.”