French Open 2023: First time since 2004, Nadal won't play at Roland Garros

The King of Clay has also hinted that if he is able to get fit for the next Roland Garros in 2024, it would be his last

BS Web Team New Delhi
Rafale Nadal

Rafale Nadal (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

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Rafael Nadal, popularly known as 'the King of Clay' has decided to withdraw from the upcoming edition of the French Open due to his injury. This will be the first instance since 2005, when the Spaniard made his debut at the Roland Garros, that he would not be a part of the second major of the year. 
In a press conference on Thursday, May 18, Nadal said, “Today I'm still in a position that I am not able to feel myself ready to compete at the standards that I need to be at to play a Roland Garros. I am not the guy that is going to be at Roland Garros and just try to be there and put myself in a position that I don't like to be in."

Talking about the progress made since his injury at the Australian Open 2023, Nadal said that he worked every single day for the last four months and that they were very difficult months for him, but the desired results could not be achieved. 
Nadal, who has won the championship record 14 times and whose last victory came in 2022, said, that if he gets fit, which he is not sure of, the 2024 French Open could be his last. 

“I can't say 100 per cent, but my idea and my motivation is to try to enjoy and try to say goodbye to all the tournaments that have been important for me in my tennis career during next year and just try to enjoy that, being competitive and enjoying being on the court,” the 36-year-old added further. 
Nadal suffered an iliopsoas muscle in his left leg during the Australian Open in January 2023. 

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In his illustrious 18-year-old lawn tennis career, the southpaw has won 22 grand slam titles, joint most by any man in the open era alongside Novak Djokovic of Serbia. 

First Published: May 18 2023 | 9:44 PM IST

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