Former world No. 1 Rafael Nadal admitted he felt a little bit of foot pain during his Indian Wells round-of-16 match. Nadal, seeded at No. 4, defeated No. 17 seed Reilly Opelka 7-6 (3) 7-6 (5) to progress into the Indian Wells quarterfinal.
Nadal, 35, was severely hampered by a foot injury last season. After the French Open, Nadal took a two-month break, skipping the Tokyo Olympics and Wimbledon. After playing just two matches in Washington, Nadal realized his foot wasn't where it needed to be and he called it a season.
"Being honest, I felt my foot a little bit in the second set. I was able to keep going, keep running till the end. That's the same thing. Yes, being honest, I am not in the moment to lie or to hide things," Nadal admitted, per Mario Boccardi.
Nadal beat Opelka for his 18th win of the year
In Australia, Nadal admitted he was unsure whether he would be able to play the Australian Open. Nadal made a decision to fly to Australia and ended up winning the Melbourne Summer Set and Australian Open.
After that, Nadal made it all the way in Acapulco. "Of course, for me it's super surprising being in the position that I am, winning three titles already, being in quarterfinals here, Indian Wells. I can't say it's a dream because I even couldn't dream about that three months ago, two months ago," Nadal added.
Yeah, things are going that way. The only thing that I can say is thanks to everybody who helps, everybody who supports me around the world, and thanks to life for this incredible opportunity that I am having. I am just enjoying every single moment." Nadal is having a stunning 2022 season but he won't be playing in Miami. Nadal pulled out of the Miami Masters due to precautionary reasons.