Will Carlos Alcaraz and Rafael Nadal be in Madrid?

Carlitos will reveal in the next few hours if he will be there but his presence is in doubt. Rafa should play, barring sensational twists...

by Lorenzo Ciotti
Will Carlos Alcaraz and Rafael Nadal be in Madrid?
© Chris Unger / Stringer Getty Images Sport

Unless there are unforeseen or sensational second thoughts, Rafael Nadal will be at the start next week in the ATP Masters 1000 tournament in Madrid. The 22-time Slam champion returned to Barcelona after an absence of more than 3 months.

His defeat against Alex De Minaur left no definite physical problems in the Spanish champion. Rafa became aware of his current physical condition and met his fans in Madrid, in view of the tournament worth dying for: the Roland Garros.

The 37-year-old is set to play the Madrid tournament two years later, when he lost to his young countryman Carlitos Alcaraz. Having already arrived in Madrid, Rafa is training hard and appeared in a video while practicing at the Mutua Madrid Open, where the fourth ATP Masters 1000 of the season will be staged from 22 to 5 May.

After Monte-Carlo and Barcelona, it will be the turn of Madrid, the last event before the Italian Open in Rome and the highly anticipated Roland Garros.

Carlos Alcaraz and Rafael Nadal
Carlos Alcaraz and Rafael Nadal© Chris Unger / Stringer Getty Images Sport

These days that separate us from the start of the prestigious Spanish ATP Masters 1000 will also answer a very heartfelt question in Spain: will Carlos Alcaraz and Rafael Nadal be there? The two champions are experiencing a particular moment in their year.

As I said at the beginning of the article, barring sensational twists, Rafa should be in Madrid.

Alcaraz, after having skipped Monte Carlo, like last year, and Barcelona, as defending champion, will shortly announce his participation in Madrid in the next few hours. Carlitos is expected in the capital where he will carry out the final tests to understand the condition of his forearm, a problem that has prevented him from taking to the court in recent outings.

In Barcelona the young two-time Slam champion had fueled some doubts about his participation in the Madrid tournament, of which he is also the reigning champion. 1000 points, which Carlos will have to defend and which in case of non-participation he will lose, further distancing him from the first two positions in the ATP ranking.

Rafa and the come back to Madrid

Rafa spoke about the match and his condition after playing the ATP tournament in Barcelona and losing in the 2nd against Alex De Minaur:

"Analyzing this week the positive thing is that I was able to play once again in Barcelona, a week ago I didn't think that this would have happened and therefore it is positive.

Furthermore, I finished this tournament without getting injured, I was very careful at all times and the negative thing is that I would have liked to play more and maybe win. The reality is that I had to play with the handbrake on, there is no other choice and I had to accept all this.

Rafael Nadal, Barcelona 2024
Rafael Nadal, Barcelona 2024© David Ramos / Staff - Getty Images Sport

It's not easy, all of this goes in the opposite way to how I perceive sport but this is the only way I can act to have a chance in the coming weeks. I played against a very high level tennis player who has had an excellent season so far.

After losing the first set the match was practically over. In the second set I had the chance to win a few games but I wasn't prepared for a battle of over two hours against a tennis player like him. I had some chances in the first set but I felt the pressure, I knew that if I gave up that set it would be over.

Goals? My goal is to play the next tournaments and then day after day I will evaluate whether I can really play, not the results. Getting on the pitch and giving my best, that's my priority," he explained.

Rafael Nadal, Barcelona 2024
Rafael Nadal, Barcelona 2024© David Ramos / Staff - Getty Images Sport

Still in the same press conference in Barcelona, Rafa gave some interesting considerations on his physical state and his presence in Madrid.

"I can't afford to play a 2-3 hour match at a competitive level at the moment. I'm very clear on what I can and can't do, sometimes I've had to slow down the pace a bit. In the last three months I haven't even been able to I practice a lot of serving, so it's difficult to serve normally for a couple of hours.

This hasn't happened since Brisbane. Before coming here I only played a few training sets and the Las Vegas match, I didn't play anything else. I had some opportunities, some moments that could have gone in my favor but I made some mistakes with my forehand.

I disappointed the fans a bit because I competed very little, but I accept what I have and where I come from. I try to be positive at all times," he analyzed

Carlos Alcaraz Rafael Nadal