The 13th edition of the Mubadala World Tennis Championship in Abu Dhabi takes place between December 16-18. The organizers have confirmed Casper Ruud, Denis Shapovalov, Emma Raducanu and Belinda Bencic as the first participants, and they have received the best possible news on Monday.
The 20-time Major winner and a five-time Mubadala champion Rafael Nadal plans to compete in Abu Dhabi next month if everything goes well with his foot, looking optimistic ahead of the upcoming Australian Open. Instead of playing at the Paris Masters, Rafa arrived in the French capital on Monday to launch Tennis is Us, a new non-profit organization run by Tennis-Point, Wilson, Babolat and other private investors.
Speaking about his recovery from a foot injury, the Spaniard explained there are good and bad days, like in every recovery process. Still, his experience is mostly positive, and he hopes to compete again next month in Abu Dhabi and start his Melbourne preparation.
The 35-year-old will try to leave the current season behind him as soon as possible, keeping his place in the top-10 despite playing under 30 matches. Nadal decided to skip the rest of the season due to a foot injury, dealing with it since the Roland Garros semi-final.
After that, Rafa played only two matches in Washington and opted to close the season, heel his foot, and come back stronger in 2022. Eager to fight for the notable title, Nadal had undergone treatment on his foot in Barcelona in September and started to practice again at home in Mallorca.
The Spaniard feels better and will work on his game and fitness in the upcoming months, hoping to get back at 100% ahead of the Australian Open, his first big target. Rafa injured his back in Adelaide in January ahead of the Australian Open, missing the ATP Cup and reaching the quarter-final at the season's first Major.
Rafael Nadal will try to recover in time for the Mubadala World Tennis Championship.
Nadal opened two sets to love advantage against Stefanos Tsitsipas before losing the next three for a massive blow and the exit door. Returning to action in April on his beloved clay, Nadal lost to Andrey Rublev in the Monte Carlo quarter-final.
A week later, he battled past Tsitsipas in the Barcelona final after three hours and 40 minutes for his first ATP title since October last year, fending off a match point to lift an important trophy. Alexander Zverev halted Nadal in Madrid, and the Spaniard bounced back in Rome to claim the 36th Masters 1000 crown, beating Novak Djokovic in the final for a boost ahead of Roland Garros.
The Serb served revenge in the Roland Garros semi-final en route to his 19th Major title, and Rafa had to skip the next couple of weeks due to a sharp pain in his foot, missing Wimbledon and the Olympic Games. Nadal played two matches in Washington in August before calling it a season after realizing he could not do much in the upcoming months.
"There are positive and negative days during the recovery process, and they are mainly positive. That's why I'm working every day, and hopefully, things will constantly improve. I do not know when I will come back, but I can reveal my goal. I want to play the Mubadala World Tennis Championship and prepare for the Australian Open," Rafael Nadal said.