Rafael Nadal withdraws from Roland-Garros

Rafael Nadal withdraws from Roland-Garros

Rafael Nadal will not celebrate his 37th birthday at Roland-Garros on June 3. Or else, it will be in the stands. Thursday, May 18, the Spaniard announced his withdrawal from the tournament, which begins on May 22. The defending champion, 14 times winner in the final at Porte d’Auteuil, gives up defending his chances on Parisian clay for the first time since his debut in 2005. “You can imagine how difficult it is for me to make this decision, dictated by my body”, he explained during a press conference organized on his native island of Mallorca.

The man who holds the record for Grand Slam victories, tied with Novak Djokovic (22 wins), has been suffering from a muscle injury in his left hip for four months. His last match dates back to January 18. He then lost in three sets in the second round of the Australian Open against the American Mackenzie McDonald, a meeting during which he was injured.

Since then, he has gone from renunciation to renunciation, and the last images of him, filmed from afar in training, did not encourage optimism. We saw him stationary on a court, leaning forward, both hands on his knees.

Nadal handicapped by numerous injuries in recent months

Already last year, Rafael Nadal had been handicapped by many physical ailments, including two abdominal tears during last summer. But he had overcome the pain to win again at Roland-Garros, his left foot anesthetized with injections. It is because this meeting holds a very special place in his immense career: he collected 112 victories there and only experienced three defeats there (in 2009, 2015 and 2021), plus a current withdrawal. tournament (in 2016, because of his left wrist).

Fallen to 14th in the world, the Spaniard clarified that he would be unavailable ” the next months “, thus excluding his participation at least in Wimbledon. Will we see him again one day in Paris, racket in hand? Tournament organizers hope so. “We will definitely miss you at Roland-Garros this year, they reacted on Twitter. Take care of yourself to come back stronger on the courts. We hope to see you again next year in Paris. » But the interested party warned that next season would be ” without a doubt “ the last for him.

Poland’s Iga Swiatek is also injured

Among women, uncertainty still reigns over the participation at Roland-Garros of the defending champion, the Polish Iga Swiatek. The 21-year-old player, world number one, injured her right thigh while playing in the quarter-finals of the Rome tournament on Wednesday May 17 and was forced to retire in the middle of the match. She explained on Twitter that she would give “more info in the next few days” on his injury.

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