Tiger Woods finished his participation in the Hero World Challenge in Albany (Bahamas) in penultimate place after his reappearance since the last Augusta Masters, which demonstrates his passion for the sport. Rafa Nadal is also in a similar situation after a long layoff due to injury and is expected to return to competition very soon.
Woods, former golf number 1, spoke about the Spanish tennis player, highlighting his bravery in winning the Australian Open with a foot injury. Woods encouraged everyone to enjoy watching him compete and to observe his passion, skill and meaning to the game and to all of us.
Woods added that Nadal is an exceptionally competitive athlete who knows that time moves on for everyone and that, unfortunately, it can affect an athlete's performance in some sports if he does not take proper care of himself.
Woods' wish is for Nadal to maintain his competitiveness and never have to retire from the game.
Tiger Woods, results
Rafa Nadal has been absent from competitions since the 2022 Australian Open, as can be seen in the image where he dried sweat with a towel in Melbourne.
Almost a year later, Nadal will return to competition during the first week of January at the Brisbane tournament. This will be his first contact with the courts since the last edition of the Australian Open. A few weeks ago, during the official presentation of the Teknon Tennis Clinic, Nadal made a forceful statement: "I don't know at what level I will be able to play, but I know that I will play again.
I had never lost my enthusiasm." However, some have doubts about whether he will be able to compete at the same level as before to fight for major titles alongside Djokovic, Alcaraz and other top players. Venus and Serena Williams' former coach, Rick Macci, expressed his opinion during an interview with 'Tennis Infinity'
Macci considers that "he is not at the same level as before, so I don't see him as a rival to win a Grand Slam. I think he can be competitive and that it will be difficult to win on clay, but it all depends on his health." As we advance in age, mobility decreases and people's perception of us becomes less intimidating as they perceive us as more vulnerable.
The difference between elite tennis players and those one step below is minimal, and this is accentuated when the latter identify an opportunity, especially on clay courts. This was stated by the consulted expert.