Rafael Nadal Clarifies Previous Comments About Potentially Missing French Open

Rafael Nadal Clarifies Previous Comments About Potentially Missing French Open

by Nurein Ahmed

Rafael Nadal has amplified his statement of potentially skipping Roland Garros if he is not in a position to win the tournament.

Nadal shed light on his expected involvement at the clay-court major, which he has won a staggering 14 times in his career. There has not been a single tennis player to match his record at the French Open, where he has lost only three times in 115 matches.

The Spaniard's honest confession that he might miss the event shocked his fans. He said that it "won't be the end" of either the world or his career should he choose not to play at Roland Garros.

Injuries have been the major drawback. Nadal has battled two separate hip tears since the start of 2023. He only marked his return to competition after an 11-month injury layoff at the Brisbane International in January.

But he picked up another injury there and had to abandon his comeback journey in February and March, missing tournaments like the Qatar Open and Indian Wells. Eventually, he made his return on his beloved clay, competing in Barcelona and now in Madrid.

After his thrilling second-round win over Alex de Minaur in front of a packed house inside Manolo Santana Stadium, Nadal explained in his post-match press conference that Roland Garros is the most important tennis tournament of his career.

While several fans and analysts believe Nadal will likely withdraw from the tournament if he is not a contender, the 22-time Grand Slam champion rejected that narrative. Instead, he said he is working on being competitive, which is the bare minimum.

"So it’s not a thing about losing or winning. It's about going on court there with the feeling that I can fight and I can be competitive and, you know, let's go on court and dream about what can happen, no?"

A decision on whether he will play in the tournament will be announced after the Italian Open in Rome, and Nadal also reiterated that it would be pointless to step on the court the moment he stops "dreaming".

"So if I am not able to go on court and dream about, even if it's the minimum, minimum percentage, for me it doesn’t make sense to go on court. I prefer to stay with all the amazing memories that I have."

"I want to be there, and even losing, but, you know, go on court with the chance to dream about something important, if that happens, I’m gonna be on court. If I am not allowed to make that happen, even if it's a super, super small percentage, I probably will not go on court. That's the feeling, and it's best-of-five, so it's a different story."


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