Rafael Nadal - Roland Garros 2022

Rafael Nadal’s former coach reveals when ‘he has discomfort’

Rafael Nadal has confirmed that he will not be able to compete at the Monte Carlo Masters next week, and his former coach of 27 years has provided an insight into the problems that the Spaniard is facing. 

Nadal has only played three matches in the past 15 months, with the former No.1 facing a further setback in his return at the Brisbane International earlier this year.

This has forced the 37-year-old to withdraw from the Australian Open, Qatar Open, Indian Wells and most recently the Monte Carlo Masters, after Nadal revealed that his body ‘simply won’t allow’ him to compete at the moment.

And now the 22-time Grand Slam champion’s uncle and former coach, Toni Nadal, has provided a further explanation to this when speaking to the EFE news agency.

“Either you go (to a tournament) 100 percent or better not participate,” said Toni Nadal. “For the moment he can’t play there, he hasn’t recovered yet. He has discomfort when serving, otherwise he has no problems when training,”

Rafael Nadal is still entered to compete at the Barcelona Open and Madrid Masters in the coming weeks, where he is a record 12-time and five-time champion, respectively.

However, Toni Nadal could not provide any insider of the likelihood of his nephew participating in those tournaments, but admitted that it would be important for Roland Garros preparation.

“I don’t know what he will do regarding Barcelona and Madrid. I haven’t been in his sports environment for years,” revealed the 63-year-old. “When we see each other I ask him how it’s going, but I don’t ask him about his plans.”

He continued, “I hope he can play because it is necessary to have a good Roland Garros. A few days ago I saw him and asked him. He told me that it was not going well and I told him the same thing as always: ‘Let’s not complain, it has gone very well for us’ because we thought that his career would end in 2011 or 2012.”

Despite Rafael Nadal’s various struggles in recent months, uncle Toni has still backed the Mallorcan to medal at the Paris Olympics later this year, “If he manages to recover and is well, I think he can win a medal in Paris. It is difficult, of course, but one cannot rule him out as one of the favourites.”

Inside the baseline…

Things are looking more and more bleak for Rafael Nadal, in what is likely to be the final year of his career. The serve is probably the most important shot in tennis, so if that is where he is struggling then it seems unlikely that he will recover completely in time for Roland Garros. Like Toni Nadal says, hopefully Rafa will be ready in time for the Olympics, as he is likely to be have a chance if fit, with the tennis events being held at Roland Garros.

READ MORE: Rafael Nadal reveals ‘very difficult moments’ after withdrawing from Monte Carlo Masters

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Matthew Johns, Tennishead Writer, is a professional tennis journalist with a specialist degree in Sports Journalism. He's a keen tennis player having represented his local club and University plus he's also a qualified tennis coach. Matthew has a deep knowledge of tennis especially the ATP Tour and thrives on breaking big tennis news stories for Tennishead.