Rafael Nadal fitness update: The 21-time Grand Slam winner won’t defend his Barcelona Open title
Rafael Nadal won’t feature at the Barcelona Open for the first time since 2010 with the defending champion forced to miss the tournament due to injury.
The 21-time Grand Slam winner injured his rib en route to finishing runner-up at the Indian Wells Open in mid-March and was ruled out for between four and six weeks.
There were high hopes that he would make an early return to kick off his preparations for the French Open, but that won’t happen as he is still not 100% fit.
“Rafa has just been withdrawn from the entry list in Barcelona,” his team told Reuters.
“We don’t know yet when he will be at his first tournament on clay this year. Hopefully, soon.”
Nadal won his 12th title in Barcelona last year, beating Stefanos Tsitsipas in three sets.
The Spaniard was in brilliant form before he succumbed to injury as he won the Melbourne Summer Set, Australian Open and Rio Open. He was 20-0 for the season before going down to Taylor Fritz in Indian Wells.
The 35-year-old is likely to make his 2022 clay-court debut at the Madrid Open, which starts on May 2, or the Italian Open a week later.
Carlos Alcaraz banishes Novak Djokovic ‘asterisk’ snipe as he reclaims No 1 ranking
Carlos Alcaraz confirmed he was a worthy world No 1 after his stunning win against Daniil Medvedev in Indian Wells.
Miami Open draw: Emma Raducanu handed nightmare opener
British No 1 Emma Raducanu is set for a tough start to her Miami Open campaign after she was drawn against Bianca Andreescu.
Stefanos Tsitsipas impressed and inspired by Jim Courier
Stefanos Tsitsipas fanboys over Jim Courier’s commentary.
Stefanos Tsitsipas reveals what it means to be ‘In Flow’
Stefanos Tsitsipas said: ‘It felt like I was in a cage and someone decided to unlock the cage and I suddenly felt free.’
John McEnroe talks trash ahead of pickleball clash with Andre Agassi and Andy Roddick
John McEnroe is ready to take on Andre Agassi one more time.
ATP Rankings: Carlos Alcaraz chasing No 1, Daniil Medvedev back in top five
Carlos Alcaraz has a window to regain the top rankings spot.
Carlos Alcaraz sets Indian Wells showdown with Daniil Medvedev
Carlos Alcaraz is one win away from becoming World No 1 again.
Elena Rybakina set to secure a new career-high WTA ranking
Elena Rybakina will reach a new career-high but victory at Indian Wells will see her supplant Maria Sakkari as world No 7.
Aryna Sabalenka says she has been subjected to abuse over nationality
Aryna Sabalenka said it was wrong to blame tennis players for the Russian military invasion of Ukraine.
Frances Tiafoe out to test injured Daniil Medvedev
Frances Tiafoe wants to deny Daniil Medvedev his 19th win in succession.