Tennis: Rafael Nadal unsure about return date after slow-healing surgery

Rafael Nadal slipped to No. 15 in the ATP singles rankings amid his injury hiatus. File photo by John Angelillo/UPI
1 of 5 | Rafael Nadal slipped to No. 15 in the ATP singles rankings amid his injury hiatus. File photo by John Angelillo/UPI | License Photo

April 20 (UPI) -- Rafael Nadal's recovery from a hip injury has been much slower than expected and he doesn't know when he can resume his tennis playing schedule or participate in the French Open, he announced Thursday on social media.

Nadal announced in January that he would miss six to eight weeks because of the hip injury he aggravated at the 2023 Australian Open.


"As you know, I suffered a major injury in Australia, in the psoas [muscle)]" Nadal wrote Thursday on Instagram and Twitter. "Initially, it had to be a six-to eight-week recovery period and we are now on 14. The reality is that the situation is not what we would have expected.

"All medical indications have been followed, but somehow the evolution has not been what they initially told us and we find ourselves in a difficult situation."

Nadal, 36, said he had the "illusion of being able to play" in several upcoming tournaments. He did not participate in the Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters from April 9 through Sunday in Roquebrune-Cap-Martin, France.


He'll also miss the Barcelona Open Banc Sabadell, which started Monday in Spain, and the Mutua Madrid Open, which will be held from Wednesday to May 7, also in Spain.

"The injury still hasn't healed and I can't work out what I need to do to compete," Nadal wrote. "I was training, but now, a few days ago, we decided to change course a bit, do another treatment and see if things improve to try to get to what comes next.

"I can't give deadlines because if I knew, I would tell you, but I don't know. This is how things are now."

The 22-time Grand Slam singles title winner lost to American Mackenzie McDonald in the Round of 64 at the Australian Open. His last title came in a win over Norway's Casper Ruud at the 2022 French Open on June 5 in Paris.

"I have no choice, but to try to have the right attitude throughout this time and to try to give myself the opportunity to compete in one of the tournaments [what] remains of the clay season and I have no choice, but to work and be with the right mentality," Nadal wrote.


The French Open will be held May 28 to June 11 at Rolland Garros.

Latest Headlines