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Rafael Nadal to miss up to 2 months with leg injury after Australian Open exit

Spaniard Rafael Nadal (pictured), the top men's seed at the 2023 Australian Open, aggravated an injury and lost to American Mackenzie McDonald in the second-round of the major Wednesday in Melbourne. Photo by Diego Fedele/EPA-EFE
1 of 6 | Spaniard Rafael Nadal (pictured), the top men's seed at the 2023 Australian Open, aggravated an injury and lost to American Mackenzie McDonald in the second-round of the major Wednesday in Melbourne. Photo by Diego Fedele/EPA-EFE

Jan. 19 (UPI) -- Tennis great Rafael Nadal will miss six to eight weeks because of the leg injury he aggravated at the 2023 Australian Open, the Spaniard announced Thursday on Twitter.

"I have undergone medical tests after losing yesterday," Nadal tweeted. "The MRI shows a grade 2 injury in the iliopsoas muscle in my left leg. Now it's time for sports rest and anti-inflammatory physiotherapy. Normal recovery time 6 to 8 weeks."

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American Mackenzie McDonald upset Nadal 6-4, 6-4, 7-5 in the second round of the Grand Slam on Wednesday in Melbourne. The Spaniard told reporters at his post-match news conference that he was bothered by a hip injury throughout the 2-hour, 32-minute match.

"I lost the match," Nadal told reporters. "That's it. I tried until the end. I don't know that if good condition, I would have won the match. I would have had a better chance, without a doubt."

McDonald will meet No. 31 Yoshihito Nishioka of Japan in the third round Friday in Melbourne. The winner of that match will face No. 16 Frances Tiafoe of the United States or No. 18 Karen Khachanov of Russia in the fourth round of the Grand Slam.

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The French Open is the next Grand Slam on the 2023 tennis schedule. The clay-court major will be held May 28 to June 11 at Rolland Garros in Paris. Nadal won the Australian Open and French Open singles titles last season.

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