May 23, 2024
Rafael Nadal

Rafael Nadal Australian Open comeback is cut short as the tennis star suffers from a new muscle tear 

Rafael Nadal announced he is withdrawing from the Australian Open 2024 after the tennis superstar suffered a hip injury in his latest match. 

Nadal made his comeback to tennis after approximately a year at the Brisbane International Open. He won his first two matches with ease. However, in the quarterfinal against Jordan Thompson on Friday, he lost after he was forced to take a medical timeout in the third set over a possible leg injury. 

After the loss, Nadal went to Melboure and underwent an MRI scan, which revealed that the former world no.1 had a ‘micro tear’ in his hip. Although the injury is not related to the hip flexor problem that kept him out of the sport for almost a year, Nadal said he is not yet fit enough to compete at the highest level and hence decided to withdraw from the year’s first Grand Slam. 

The tennis star announced his decision with a post on X, writing, “During my last match in Brisbane I had a small problem on a muscle that as you know made me worried. Once I got to Melbourne I have had the chance to make an MRI and I have micro tear on a muscle, not in the same part where I had the injury and that’s good news. Right now I am not ready to compete at the maximum level in 5 sets matches. I’m flying back to Spain to see my doctor, get some treatment and rest.”

Nadal’s performance during his comeback looked really promising. However, his good performance was cut short. The tennis superstar further wrote in X, “I have worked very hard during the year for this comeback and as I always mentioned my goal is to be at my best level in 3 months. Within the sad news for me for not being able to play in front of the amazing Melbourne crowds, this is not very bad news and we all remain positive with the evolution for the season. I really wanted to play here in Australia and I have had the chance to play a few matches that made me very happy and positive. Thanks all for the support and see you soon!” 

He called the news ‘good’ as the injury is not in the same place when he sustained a hip injury last year and had to undergo two hip surgeries. Due to his long absence from the tour, the 22-time major champion dropped to 664th place in the world rankings. 

Rafael Nadal to retire?

Rafael Nadal also hinted at his retirement at the end of last year, saying this might possibly be his final season on tour. However, he refused to set a date and said he will continue playing if he feels good on court. 

The 2024 Australian Open begins on January 14th. This is the first time since 1999 that the tournament will not feature either Nadal or Roger Federer, who retired from tennis in 2022. 

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