Rafael Nadal is aiming for an Abu Dhabi return subsequent month—if his left foot continues feeling high quality.
The 20-time Grand Slam champion mentioned he’s focusing on a return on the thirteenth annual Mubadala World Tennis Championship in Abu Dhabi, December 16-18th, adopted by a January tune-up event earlier than enjoying the 2022 Australian Open.
That comeback plan is contingent on the well being of Nadal’s left foot, which compelled him to overlook the Olympics and US Open earlier than he pulled the plug on his season on August twentieth.
“My plan is to play Abu Dhabi in December and a event earlier than enjoying the Australian Open. It’s my aim and we’re working onerous to make it that manner,” Nadal instructed the media at a promotional occasion for his sponsor. “I do not know precisely once I’ll be again, however I can say that my aim is to attempt to come again to Abu Dhabi in December, after which, after all, for the beginning of the brand new season in January.
“The damage in my foot nonetheless must get slightly higher, however I am already coaching nearly an hour and a half a day in order that’s optimistic.”
If Nadal’s comeback plan proceeds on schedule he’ll play for a males’s document twenty first Grand Slam crown in Melbourne. 9-time AO champion Novak Djokovic is undecided about enjoying the Australian Open saying he’ll wait to see what the Australian authorities’s security protocol for gamers might be earlier than reaching a remaining choice.
The Australian Open begins on January seventeenth, 2022.
Nadal gained back-to-back five-set marathon matches defeating Fernando Verdasco and Roger Federer in succession to seize his lone Australian Open crown in 2009.
The 35-year-old Spaniard has reached 4 Australian Open finals since his 2009 triumph bowing to Novak Djokovic in 2012, dropping to Stan Wawrinka in 2013, falling to Federer within the 2017 and shedding to Djokovic within the 2019 remaining. Nadal squandered a two-set lead in a five-set loss to Stefanos Tsitsipas within the 2021 Australian Open quarterfinals.
Although Nadal concedes the foot damage hampered his preparation in the course of the previous 12 months, he confirmed his dedication to returning to play for Slams in 2022.
“Over the last 12 months I used to be not in a position to observe and put together myself the best way I should be aggressive on the requirements I need to be,” Nadal mentioned. “So we needed to take that call however I’m assured I’ll recuperate myself 100% and can have the ability to combat once more for an important issues.”
Photograph credit score: Christopher Levy