Rafael Nadal played the misery of seven official tournaments in 2021 due to a chronic foot injury. The former world number 1 won two titles (Barcelona and Rome), but failed to win the 14th Roland Garros of his extraordinary career.
Not being in top condition, the Spanish phenomenon had to surrender to Novak Djokovic in the semifinals in Paris. The foot problem forced the 35-year-old Majorcan to miss Wimbledon, the Tokyo Olympics and the US Open. The Iberian tried a timid return to the hard courts in Washington, but his pain was too strong to be able to play the last Grand Slam of the season.
A few days later, Rafa announced his decision to close his 2021 early. Nadal has already resumed training and will be back on the pitch at Abu Dhabi next month. The 20-time Grand Slam champion has already confirmed his presence at the Australian Open 2022, where he hopes to repeat the triumph he achieved in 2009.
The presence of his eternal rival Novak Djokovic in Australia is still uncertain, as vaccination will be required to cross the gates of Melbourne Park.
Nadal had a foot treatment at his home
Rafael Nadal, who had a foot treatment at his home, has already begun practicing and recently revealed that his goal was to be back as soon as possible.
Now, his uncle and ex-coach Toni Nadal confirmed his nephew’s participation at the Australian Open next year. Journalist Jose Morgado shared the information on Twitter. Toni, who attended an event in Portugal, revealed the comeback details of Nadal.
“Toni Nadal was in Portugal today. Said Rafa is practicing well and should be 100% at the AusOpen”, wrote the journalist. Nadal, a 20-time Major champion, has been out of action since August this year after aggravating a chronic foot injury at Roland Garros.
Nadal underwent treatment for the problem but did not require surgery. "My goal right now is to prepare myself in the best possible way in every way for when I am ready to arrive and be able to be competitive," Rafael Nadal said.
"I know it's going to be a complicated process because it's many months but I'm with the utmost enthusiasm and that's what should lead me to have options next year," Nadal added. Nadal believes 2021 has been a "good year" for women's tennis in Spain.
He believes Muguruza's WTA Finals triumph has a "special meaning," since no other Spaniard has managed to pull off the feat. "It has been a good year for (Spanish) women's tennis and with a good culmination winning the last tournament, which had not been achieved and has a special meaning," Rafael Nadal said.