Rafael Nadal reveals light schedule if the season continues


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Rafael Nadal reveals light schedule if the season continues

World no. 2 and the 19-time Major champion Rafael Nadal is spending the quarantine time at home in Mallorca with his family, recommending everyone to stay safe and follow the rules in these troubled times for Spain caused by a coronavirus.

Due to a pandemic, the tennis season is halted at least until the second week of June, with slim chances to see the action on grass as well as the virus still refuses to slow down, taking Western Europe by a storm. Nadal went to Indian Wells after claiming the title in Acapulco but couldn't compete for the fourth title in the desert, with the organizers canceling the opening two Masters 1000 events of the season and also all the events in April and May as well to completely eliminate the spring season on clay.

Rafa went back home to Porto Cristo in Mallorca, working on physical exercises while making sure his students and staff at the Academy are all protected. Just six weeks after the victorious Davis Cup Finals last November, Nadal led Spain at the inaugural ATP Cup in January and scored wins over Nikoloz Basilashvili, Pablo Cuevas and Yoshihito Nishioka, pushing his country into the quarters together with Roberto Bautista Agut.

His first loss of the season came against David Goffin after grueling two hours and 23 minutes, bouncing back in the doubles clash to keep Spain alive in the competition. In the semis, Nadal battled past Alex de Minaur after another marathon to propel the red squad into the final where he stood no chance against Novak Djokovic who beat him 6-2, 7-6, missing the opportunity to conquer another team event when Djokovic and Troicki defeated Spain in the deciding doubles encounter.

Chasing the first Australian Open title since 2009, Nadal toppled Hugo Dellien, Federico Delbonis, Pablo Carreno Busta and Nick Kyrgios after an intense battle that propelled him into the quarter-final, standing one victory away from keeping the no.

1 spot ahead of Djokovic. Nonetheless, inspired Dominic Thiem ousted Rafa in four epic sets after four hours and ten minutes, standing strong in three tie breaks and allowing Novak Djokovic to become world no. 1 again after beating the Austrian in five challenging sets in the final.

After Melbourne, Nadal had to stay on the road for a week, opening Rafa Nadal Academy in Kuwait on February 5 and playing against Roger Federer in Cape Town two days later in front of the record-breaking crowd of 52,000, heading back home to Mallorca before conquering the 85th title in Acapulco at the end of February, his last event on the Tour so far.

At the moment, it is hard to speak about the possible restart of the season, with all the players hoping to at least play Wimbledon and the rest of this disturbing year caused by a dangerous virus that has produced more than 18,000 deaths so far.

Nadal revealed the updated schedule, sending Indian Wells, Monte Carlo, Barcelona, Madrid and Rome into a recycle bin and still keeping Roland Garros in that original program at the end of May, although that will not happen as the organizers already set a date for September 20.

Rafa should play his first tournament at Wimbledon if everything goes well by then, taking an extended break until the US Open as he hasn't included Canada (he won the title there a year ago) or Cincinnati to his schedule.

After New York, there's Shanghai on his intended trip before the last edition of the ATP Finals in London.