SHOCK at Indian Wells: Rafael Nadal withdraws

The Spanish champion has made the decision to withdraw from the ATP Masters 1000 in California because he is not yet ready

by Lorenzo Ciotti
SHOCK at Indian Wells: Rafael Nadal withdraws
© Chris Unger / Stringer Getty Images Sport

The news that all the fans didn't want: Rafael Nadal withdrew from Indian Wells because he is not yet physically ready. "It is with great sadness that I have to withdraw from this fantastic Indian Wells tournament. Everyone knows how much I love this place and how much I love playing here.

This is also one of the reasons why I came to the desert very early to train and try to prepare," wrote the Spaniard in a first post published on his X account.

"I have been working hard and practicing and you all know I took a test this weekend but I don't find myself ready to play at the highest level at such an important event.

It is not an easy decision, it's a tough one as a matter of fact but I can't lie to myself and lie to the thousands of fans. I will miss you all and I am sure the tournament will be a great success," added Rafa in a second post.

"We are very sorry that Rafa is unable to play, but we wish him a speedy recovery and hope to see him back on the court soon," tournament CEO Tommy Haas said in a statement.

The last official match played by Nadal in 2024 remains the quarter-finals of the Brisbane International, when he was defeated after a hard fight by Jordan Thompson, a match in which he was injured. Only last Sunday Rafa played The Netflix Slam against Carlitos Alcaraz, a match in which he showed a good physical level, but not enough to allow him to play the BNP Paribas Open.

In Las Vegas, Nadal showed an excellent level of play despite losing in the super tie-break of the third set against his compatriot Carlos Alcaraz.

Rafael Nadal© David Becker / Stringer Getty Images Sport

Andy Roddick's words

Talking about Nadal's future and thinking about everything he has given tennis fans over the years, Andy Roddick said he was lucky to have had the chance to observe a legend up close.

"We are lucky to have had and to have an athlete like Rafael Nadal in tennis all this time. He shakes hands with every single person he meets. It's as if he never has a day off even with people. He is a true gentleman," confessed the former American tennis player in the latest episode of his podcast Served with Andy Roddick.

Indian Wells Rafael Nadal