Rafael Nadal's recent injury will have some consequences for his overall 2024 schedule, so let's take a look at what might happen.
Nadal, of course, had a pretty set plan for what he wanted to do in 2024. The first on the menu was just coming to Brisbane and actually playing a match. That happened, and it went really well as he won in two sets against a pretty solid player like Dominic Thiem.
Expectations didn't change much for him after that match despite the increasing hype. It only got worse after he dismantled Jason Kubler in the next match, but once again, Nadal kept it cool.
He knew better than to get too excited, and the cold shower came in the next match against Jordan Thompson. A hip injury, similar to the one that kept him out of play during the 2023 season, prevented the Spaniard from continuing.
Ultimately, it was a muscle tear, but bad enough to keep him from playing at the Australian Open. So what happens now? He's certainly not going to play this month or next month. But will he play at the Sunshine Double?
This recent injury came because he pushed a little bit too much too soon. And he won't be making that again. The far more likely outcome is that he simply skips everything until the clay season.
It was always going to be the main part of the season for him because many assumed it was the only surface where he could seriously challenge some of the best. The Monte-Carlo Masters could be an option, but more likely than not, it's going to be the Barcelona Open.
It's one of his favourite events which has its main court named after him, and he's won it 12 times. Anything beyond that is subject to how he actually feels upon returning, but if we assume that it goes well, then the Madrid Open seems like the next logical event.
Most likely, the Spanish player will then skip the Italian Open, to prepare himself physically for the Roland Garros and the Paris Olympics. What happens after that remains to be seen, but it wouldn't be surprising if the Spaniard skipped all of the tournaments until his beloved clay-court season.