Rafael Nadal says his ‘intention is to play at Wimbledon’ for first time in three years despite lingering foot injury


The 36-year-old, speaking at a press conference in Mallorca, Spain, said that he will travel to London on Monday to play at the grand slam which he has won twice and will play depending on how his foot feels.

“My intention is to try to play Wimbledon like I said after Paris, if there’s some possibility, which it looks like,” Nadal explained. “This week where I trained, they said that there’s a chance, so my intention is to travel to London on Monday, and if I travel to London, it’s because I intend to play.

“If later on, as days go on, things don’t go how I’d like them to, well, we’ll see what happens. But my plan is to travel on Monday to London, do a week of training there, play an exhibition like I’ve done a lot of times at Hurlingham and prepare myself in the best way I can.

Nadal takes part in a training session at Santa Ponsa Country Club in Santa Ponsa, Mallorca.

He added: “It’s been three years I haven’t played (Wimbledon), I’m excited, but we’ll see how (the foot) progresses. It’s a day-by-day thing. I trust that things go well and I can go on with my week of training, so that I can have a chance to compete well at Wimbledon.”

Nadal won his 14th French Open title earlier this month — his record-extending 22nd in total — despite playing the final without any feeling in his foot.

The Spaniard has been suffering with a foot injury for years now, and it’s an ongoing problem that Nadal said required daily injections at the French Open in order to keep playing and training.

“After the pandemic, something happened in my foot. I am not able to manage the pain to play often and even practice,” Nadal told CNN’s Christiane Amanpour, who has been beset by injury problems throughout his career.

“The only thing I can say is going through all these challenges, I always hold the passion to keep going and I always hold the love for the game,” he added. “I always wanted to keep going. That’s probably why I am in the position that I am today.”

Nadal celebrates his victory at the 2022 French Open.

Nadal hasn’t played at Wimbledon since losing to Roger Federer in the semifinals in 2019 as the Covid-19 pandemic canceled the 2020 edition and the Spaniard pulled out of last year’s tournament due to injury.

Despite his ongoing injury concerns, the world No. 4 has already won the first two grand slams of the season — the Australian Open and the French Open — as he attempts to win extraordinary calendar grand slam.

This year’s Wimbledon gets underway on June 27 but will be without the injured Federer and Alexander Zverev.

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