Rafa Nadal Australian Open 2022

Rafa Nadal ‘didn’t know if he could return at all’ after long absence

Spanish legend Nadal reveals he feared the worst during an enforced break from tennis last year due to injury and a bout of COVID.

Rafa Nadal is through to the semi finals of the Australian Open men’s singles after a brutal five set victory over Canadian prodigy Denis Shapovalov but the 20 time Grand Slam winner has revealed that at times he thought a return to the sport he loves was unlikely.

Speaking to Jim Courier in his post match on court interview Nadal was asked how he felt during the enforced 6 month break he had to take in 2021 when he said that at times ‘he didn’t know he could make it back onto the (tennis tour) at all’.

Now aged 36 but with 20 Grand Slam titles under his belt, Nadal is an elder statesman of the game but still seems capable of winning the biggest matches and tournaments after this hard fought 5 set victory in Melbourne.

Nadal is still unbeaten this year and will be a favourite to lift his 21st Grand Slam singles title but the brutally hot conditions nearly ended his hopes today and he was forced to take an injury time out and receive treatment from a doctor at one point of the match.

Nadal will now face the winner of Gael Monfils and Matteo Berrettini in the semi final on Friday which gives him a welcome two day break.

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Tim Farthing, Tennishead Editorial Director & Owner, has been a huge tennis fan his whole life. He's a tennis journalist and entrepreneur as well as playing tennis to a national standard. He also helps manage his local club and volunteers for his local tennis organisation. He's a specialist in content about the administration of professional tennis and tennis coaching for all levels.