Rafael Nadal: 'I put myself in a position to have a chance'

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Rafael Nadal: 'I put myself in a position to have a chance'

Former German tennis player Mischa Zverev acknowledged that Rafael Nadal often has too many problems and believes that a great career is slowly coming to an end. Nadal missed almost the entire second half of the 2021 season, before returning in January and winning a record 21st Grand Slam.

A stress fracture in the ribs kept Nadal out of the start of the clay season, and when he returned, he began experiencing problems with his foot again. There is a big question mark regarding Nadal's fitness before the French Open and Zverev says it would be "sad" if the Spaniard looked far from his usual self in Paris.

"He can be positive and have strength and energy in his head. But now first the ribs, then the foot... and then sometimes he is also tired or at least looks tired on the court. There are too many problems that come up too often.

It's like a car that has a problem every few kilometers. This year I have a very mixed feeling about Rafa. Either we will love him as always with his tennis on clay in Paris, or we will see a Rafa this year who is really a bit more tired than usual.

And that would be a sad thing," Zverev said on Eurosport Germany's tennis podcast Das Gelbe vom Ball. Thiem, the 2020 US Open champion, was out for 10 months before starting his 2022 season at the end of March.

Latest update on Rafa Nadal

Rafael Nadal has declared that there are "without a doubt" players in better shape than him ahead of the 2022 French Open.

"I think I won 12 Barcelonas and 10 Romes and I think 11 Monte-Carlos, so probably is not the big difference between here and the rest of the places, no?" the Mallorcan said. "No, it's true that here I won maybe a couple more than the rest of the places, no, but I think my level of tennis on clay have been high during a long period of time in my tennis career, without a doubt.

That's what the number says." The 21-time Grand Slam champion highlighted his victory at the Australian Open in January as an example of him overcoming difficult circumstances to triumph. "Same happened in Australia, and I put myself in a position to have a chance," Nadal added.

"And here is no different. In the case that that can happen, yes, difficult, yes too, but only thing I have to do is believe in my chances, believe in my daily work, and then stay positive and believe in my real chances."