Rafael Nadal's Revelation: Overcoming Worries on the Road to Redemption

Rafael Nadal will compete in Brisbane at the beginning of 2024

by Jovica Ilic
Rafael Nadal's Revelation: Overcoming Worries on the Road to Redemption
© Daniel Pockett / Stringer - Getty Images Sport

After not playing for a year, Rafael Nadal will continue his tennis journey in Brisbane in the first week of 2024. The Spaniard has missed all the action after this year's Australian Open, injuring his left hip and undergoing surgery in June.

Rafa is unafraid of his hip, healing it and practicing without issues for a few months. However, everything else worries a grand champion, returning to action from uncharted territory and the most extended break of his career.

Nadal is ranked outside the top-600 for the first time in over two decades, starting from the beginning and risking facing rivals from the top early at every tournament. Despite that, Rafa is eager to compete again and seek his A-game in the upcoming months, hoping to enjoy on the court.

After a rough 2021, Nadal could not avoid injuries the following year. However, he claimed two Major titles in the first half of the season, standing alone on 22. Rafa reached the Wimbledon semi-final, extending his streak before withdrawing due to an abdominal injury that would bother him for months.

One thing led to another, and Nadal has played only 13 matches since August 2022, winning five and losing ground like never before. Rafa could not recover ahead of 2023, losing both United Cup matches and heading to the Australian Open with zero confidence.

Rafael Nadal will return to action in a couple of weeks.

Nadal made a winning start against Jack Draper before experiencing a severe hip injury against Mackenzie McDonald that ended his season. Rafa revealed a Grade 2 iliopsoas and underwent arthroscopic surgery in June, missing the rest of the year and jeopardizing his career.

After a proper rest, Nadal started practicing again, combining his training sessions with the gym and shaping up his body. Rafa raised his level on the practice court and scheduled his comeback for Brisbane, returning to action after almost a year.

The Spaniard is aware of his challenging position but hopes everything will be fine soon if his body endures the efforts. "It's been a long time, and I hope to feel those nerves, illusions, fears and doubts again. I expect nothing from myself, and it's the truth.

My career is in a different place than before, and I'm in a position to only ask a little from myself. After missing a year and undergoing a hip injury, I have been afraid to announce things. It's not the hip that worries me the most but everything else.

I'm ready to compete again, hoping everything will go well and allow me to enjoy on the court," Rafael Nadal said.

Rafael Nadal