Specialist: Rafael Nadal will not be the only top-five player injured
Leading sports medicine specialist Joshua Dines believes Rafael Nadal won’t be the only top-five player sidelined through injury during this year’s ATP championship.
Nadal is set to miss three weeks of tennis after suffering a Grade 1 injury to the iliopsoas, or inner hip muscles, during his Australian Open semifinal match.
The world No 1 has subsequently blamed the ATP’s grueling tennis schedule, however, Dines believes there is more to it.
And so much more that he reckons the sport will see other top-five players succumb to injuries during this season.
“Nadal’s blaming the ATP scheduling as part of the explanation for his injuries may be in part correct, but it is likely an oversimplification,” Dines told Forbes.
“There are a multitude of factors increasing the strain on players’ bodies. Unfortunately, given the changes highlighted above, it is unlikely that Nadal’s injury will be the only one to a top five player this year.
“The demanding schedule is just one part of the problem facing professional tennis players today. With the changes in equipment and court surfacing and improved athleticism, the players now move quicker, hit each shot with more power and are forced to play matches that are longer and tougher.”
He added: “There is no longer a top professional player who always serves-and-volleys like Patrick Rafter, or a top player like John McEnroe, who was known for his deft hands and quick reflexes.
“All professionals at the highest level are forced to play with more power at the baseline, further lengthening the rallies, matches and strain on the body.”
2020 ATP Awards nominees revealed: Diego Schwartzman in the running for two awards
Your 2020 ATP Awards nominees…
Grand Slam winners Sofia Kenin, Naomi Osaka, Iga Swiatek on WTA Player of the Year shortlist
Your 2020 WTA player award nominations are out.
Roger Federer accused of ‘using his position’ and changing ATP Rankings system to ‘protect himself’
Dirk Hordorff unimpressed by Roger Federer.
Out with the old, in with the new as WTA revamps event categories, changes logo, marketing campaign
New logo, revamped tournament categories for WTA.
2021 Australian Open set for 8 February start with players allowed to train during quarantine – reports
Dates for the 2021 Australian Open all but confirmed.
Roger Federer delivers a special Christmas treat for his army of fans
Roger Federer has revealed his iconic RF logo is now back under his control.
Andy Murray: ‘I want to do everything that I did when I was No 1 to see what I can achieve’
Andy Murray determined to get back into shape.
Belinda Bencic on teaming up with Roger Federer at Tokyo Games: ‘I’m ready, it’s just up to Roger now’
Swiss dream team for 2021 Tokyo Games?
‘My first hit in over a year’ – Laura Robson on comeback trail after hip surgery
Robson last played a tournament in April 2019.
British youngster Paul Jubb dreaming big after disrupted first year as pro tennis player
Jubb made his Wimbledon debut last summer.