Rafael Nadal - Roland Garros 2022

Rafael Nadal ‘unable’ to play in Madrid fuelling concerns around his Roland Garros participation

Rafael Nadal has concerned fans that he will not get the chance to compete for a record 15th Roland Garros title this year, after admitting he ‘can’t give deadlines’ for his return.

Nadal has been on the injury sidelines since the Australian Open, with a grade two tear to his iliopsoas muscle and was originally only scheduled to be out for six to eight weeks.

However, it has been made aware that the injury was more serious than first thought and in a latest statement on social media Nadal confirmed that he would ‘be unable’ to compete at his home Masters 1000 event in Madrid.

“As you know I suffered an important injury in Australia of the psoas [muscle],” said Nadal. “Initially it had to be a six to eight week recovery period and we are now on fourteen. The reality is that the situation is not what we would have expected.”

The 22-time Grand Slam champion continued, “All medical indications have been followed, but somehow the evolution has not been what they initially told us and we find ourselves in a difficult situation.”

“The weeks are passing and I had the illusion of being able to play in tournaments that are the most important in my career such as Monte Carlo, Barcelona, ​​Madrid, Rome, Roland Garros and for the moment I have missed Monte Carlo and Barcelona. I will not be able to be in Madrid unfortunately.”

Fans of the 36-year-old were originally hopeful about his injury comeback after he had shared images of him training on social media, however he appears to have changed his course of action upon recent developments.

“The injury still hasn’t healed and I can’t work out what I need to to compete. I was training, but now a few days ago we decided to change course a bit, do another treatment and see if things improve to try to get to what comes next,” explained Nadal.

He added, “I can’t give deadlines because if I knew I would tell you but I don’t know. This is how things are now.”

Rafael Nadal at the Madrid Open

While the only Masters event in his home country is not his most dominant clay tournament, Nadal has still won the title on five occasions.

Here are the 22-time Grand Slam champion’s five final victories in the Spanish capital:

2005 (Hard court) – Nadal beat Ivan Ljubicic, 3-6 2-6 6-3 6-4 7-6(3)

2010 – Nadal beat Roger Federer, 6-4 7-6(5)

2013 – Nadal beat Stan Wawrinka, 6-2 6-4

2014 – Nadal beat Kei Nishikori, 2-6 6-4 3-0 (retired)

2017 – Nadal beat Dominic Thiem, 7-6(8) 6-4

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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.