Rafael Nadal withdraws from Abu Dhabi exhibition tournament

Hope Soto
December 25, 2017

This latest piece of news is yet another setback to the beginning of the 2018 season and casts some serious doubt as to whether Nadal will be ready to play some competitive tennis by the start of the year at the Brisbane global.

According to Marca, the world No. 1 consulted with his doctor in Barcelona last Monday and is in a race against time to be ready for his official 2018 start in Brisbane, which kicks off on December 31. EPA/JuanJo MartinRafael Nadal of Spain returns to Karen Khachanov of Russian Federation in their third round match during the Wimbledon Championships at the All England Lawn Tennis Club, in London, Britain, 07 July 2017.

Nadal - who won the French and US Opens - racked up an impressive 67 victories, before knee problems hampered his progress at the ATP Finals. EPA/GERRY PENNYRafael Nadal of Spain in action against David Goffin of Belgium during their group stage match during the ATP Finals in London, Britain, 13 November 2017.

But the Spaniard's prospects of landing back-to-back majors for the first time since 2010 don't look good after the battered baseliner's decision to cancel a five-day training camp in Majorca last week.

Portuguese journalist Jose Morgado quoted Sousa as saying Nadal "still isn't ready" to practice.

Andy Murray slides to reach a ball during the 2016 Australian Open final.

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Also, Nadal withdrawing from this event should not necessarily ring alarm bells just yet.

The good news for fans is Novak Djokovic is champing at the bit to return from his six-month lay-off to challenge for an unprecedented seven men's Open crown.

2017 was a year marked by comebacks.

But the popular Belarusian's appearance is also uncertain after she pulled out of the Auckland Classic lead-up event for "personal reasons".

"Great news for me to share with you that I will compete in the exhibition tournament in Abu Dhabi".

Other reports by MaliBehiribAe

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