Rafael Nadal - Roland Garros 2022

Rafael Nadal ‘sorrily’ announces his withdrawal from Rome Masters

Rafael Nadal has confirmed that he will not be able to play the Italian Open, casting doubts over whether the Spaniard will even be able to compete for a 15th Roland Garros title later this month.

Nadal has been out of action since his second round defeat at the Australian Open in January with a grade two tear to his psoas, despite the original recovery time only supposed to be six eight weeks.

The 22-time Grand Slam champion took to social media to tell his fans that he would not be heading to the Italian capital where he has had so much success over the years.

“Hello everyone! I am very sorry to announce that I will not be able to be in Rome. You all know how much it hurts me to miss another one of the tournaments that have marked my professional and personal career for all the love and support of the Italian tifosi,” explained Nadal.

The 36-year-old added, “Despite having noticed an improvement in recent days, there have been many months without having been able to train at a high level and the readaptation process has its times and I have no choice but to accept them and continue working. A hug to all.”

Nadal now has until the 28th May to prepare for his most successful major tournament, Roland Garros, despite having not played a professional match almost four months.

Rafael Nadal and his record at the Italian Open

As with many clay tournaments, Nadal has won the Italian Open title more than any other man or woman, with his last coming in a final victory over his great rival Novak Djokovic in 2021.

Here are Nadal’s statistics in Rome over the years:

Win-loss record: 69-8 (90%)

Best result: Won the title (2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2010, 2012, 2013, 2018, 2019, 2021)

Nadal’s only eight defeats in Rome:

  1. Juan Carlos Ferrero beat Nadal, 7-5 6-1 (Second Round, 2008)
  2. Novak Djokovic beat Nadal, 6-4 6-4 (Final, 2011)
  3. Novak Djokovic beat Nadal, 4-6 6-3 6-3 (Final, 2014)
  4. Stan Wawrinka beat Nadal, 7-6(7) 6-2 (Quarter-final, 2015)
  5. Novak Djokovic beat Nadal, 7-5 7-6(4) (Quarter-final, 2016)
  6. Dominic Thiem beat Nadal, 6-4 6-3 (Quarter-final, 2017)
  7. Diego Schwartzman beat Nadal, 6-2 7-5 (Quarter-final, 2020)
  8. Denis Shapovalov beat Nadal, 1-6 7-5 6-2 (Third Round, 2022)

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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.