It’s off! No Fedal meeting as Rafael Nadal withdraws from Roger Federer clash
There was to be no 39th career meeting between Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer during the 2019 Indian Wells Masters after the former withdrew due to injury.
The duo were due to meet in the semi-final of the BNP Paribas Open, but the 17-time Grand Slam winner pulled out because of a right knee problem.
Nadal admitted after his quarter-final win over Karen Khachanov that he was struggling, but gave it until Saturday to make a decision.
Unfortunately his knee just didn’t quite feel right.
“I warmed up today and I felt that my knee was not good to compete at the level I needed to compete in semi-final,” the Spaniard said.
“It’s tough for me to accept all these things that I’m going through in my career. Sometimes I feel sad because I’m in a disadvantage to all my opponents.
“[I need to] be positive and grateful for all the things tennis has given to me. I feel fortunate for all the things I’ve done in my life and the world of tennis.”
Nadal’s withdrawal means Federer advances to his third consecutive Indian Wells final and he will face either Milos Raonic or Dominic Thiem on Sunday.
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