Rafael Nadal Australian Open 2021

‘Roland Garros is the final goal’, doctor of Rafa Nadal gives fitness update ahead of clay court season

Angel Ruiz Cotorro, doctor of Rafael Nadal, has given an update on the 20-time Grand Slam champion’s fitness ahead of the European clay-court season.

The 33-year-old Spaniard is set to return to action at the Monte Carlo Masters next week, before likely featuring at tournaments in Barcelona, Madrid and Rome prior to the French Open.

“(Nadal) is training well. He is training hard. His goal is clay, Monte Carlo first and Roland Garros is the final goal,” Cotorro told RTVE.

Nadal is an 11-time champion and holds a 71-5 record at the Monte Carlo Masters 1000 event – which will run from April 11-18.

The ATP 500 in Barcelona will be played the following week (April 19-25), before the Masters 1000 tournaments in Madrid (May 2-9) and Rome (May 9-16). Roland Garros is due to be held from May 23 until June 6.

The Spaniard last played at the Australian Open in February – where he lost in the quarter-finals to Stefanos Tsitsipas having led by 2-0 in sets. He had been struggling with a back injury, and withdrew from recent ATP events in Rotterdam and Miami.

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.