Everyone was slammed by the coronavirus pandemic in March wth tournaments cancelled and some postponed. Rafael Nadal no. 2 in the world knew that he would not be going to the United States tournaments as the statistics had grown for the virus and then leveled off.
He'd say 'yes' to one of his favorite events, the Madrid Open. As time went on his fellow comrade and tournament director Feliciano Lopez had difficult choices to make and decided to cancel the extraordinary event to take place in September, just to play it safe.
Nadal has won five titles and was the first and only player in 2010 to complete the 'Clay Slam' capturing titles at Roland Garros and the three clay Masters: Monte Carlo, Rome and then Madrid.
But has tension grew more for Rafael Nadal?
The Spaniard had lost his chance to compete and perhaps do better at Madrid as last year he was defeated in the semifinals by Stefanos Tsitsipas in 3 sets.
"I'll be able to try to win this kind of tournament...I have to be fit and play properly and at a high tennis level..." he had said to the ATPmedia last year. Nadal had opted to not trust himself in traveling to the United States and going into a pandemic situation so he's giving the Western and Southern along with the US Open 'a miss' until next year.
He admits that it's "a decision I never wanted to take." The Spaniard knows that his chances of defending his titles are running thin. The only major left for this year is the French Open. It's a slam he's captured 12 times and yearns to defend his title and make it a lucky 13.
But the last title on his resume was the Mexican Open back in March, nearly six months ago. He would defeat the NextGen Taylor Fritz in straight sets -- but so much time has elapsed. Can Rafael Nadal accomplish success again? Besides from the Pandemic running through his head, he may be thinking of how consistent and top level he can be after so long of a hiatus.
In another month the Paris Slam will be here. Will Nadal be able to present his game at its superior level? The Spaniard knows that nothing matters until you're on the court. He's mentioned to the ATPmedia about his career philosophy that "..I think I have taken the victories very naturally."
Rafael Nadal also emphasizes that "with the losses I'll do the same." When he steps on the court of Roland Garros he probably knows "It will be normal" He also vows that no matter the circumstances, "I'm going to accept it naturally."