Rafael Nadal said it was a miracle that he managed to stay in the top-10 for so long considering his history with injuries. On April 25th, 2005, Nadal broke into the top-10 for the first time since his career. Nadal, who is now ranked at No 8 in the world, pulled out of the upcoming Masters events in Indian Wells and Miami.
Following his Indian Wells withdrawal - where he made the final last year - Nadal is set to leave the top-10 for the first time in 18 years. "I prefer to be in the top-10, it's obvious, but in the end one has to accept things as they come.
With all the injuries I've had over the last 18 years, not having left the top-10 at any occasion is practically a miracle. A time has come when a lot has happened in the last year: a broken rib, two abdominal tears, now hip, foot problems, there are many things that, in tennis, with a ranking that lasts a year, you know if you don't play, you're out of the top-10," Nadal told Punto de Break.
Nadal on when he will return
Nadal last competed at the Australian Open, where he was visibly hampered by a hip injury. Following his withdrawal from the Sunshine Double, many are hoping to see Nadal back in action at the start of the clay season.
On April 9th, the Monte Carlo Masters is kicking off. Nadal confirmed his intention is to return during the clay season but insisted he does not know where his comeback will come. "I don't know if it will be Monte Carlo, I don't know if it will be Barcelona, if it will be Madrid," Nadal said.
For Nadal, the most important thing will be to be fit and ready for the French Open, where he will try to win a record 15th title this year. It remains to be seen if Nadal will be ready to return to action at the start of the clay season.