Twenty time Grand Slam winner Rafael Nadal says he is unsure when he will return to competitive tennis as he continues cautious recovery from injury.
The former world No.1 hasn’t played a match since the Citi Open in August due to a left foot injury caused by Muller-Weiss syndrome. A condition Nadal has had for a few years where there is a deformity in the foot that causes pain which could worsen over time. Recently he underwent treatment on his foot in Barcelona but not surgery.
Providing an update on his recovery at a special ceremony arranged in his honour at the Town Hall of Sant Llorenç des Cardassar (Mallorca), the 35-year-old told reporters that he is determined to get back into a ‘good condition.’ Due to injury, he was forced to miss both Wimbledon and the Olympic Games in Tokyo this season.
“I want to recover from this injury in good condition,” News Agency EFE quoted Nadal as saying.
“I don’t know when I will play again, I work a lot every day, I follow a specific plan with a marked roadmap and with very clear objectives.
“I will not say what those objectives are, because there are always things that I can’t control one hundred percent, but inside my head I’m clear on what my objectives are and I trust that things will follow a positive course.”
Earlier this week the Spaniard posted a video of him training at his academy on social media. He has only been able to play two matches on the Tour since reaching the semi-finals of the French Open back in June.
“I am in a process of recovery, of work, with a progressive increase in loads and the sensations are not measured daily,” he explained. “You have to be a little cautious, look a little in the medium term.”
This season, Nadal has achieved a win-loss 24-5, as well as winning two ATP titles in Rome and Barcelona on his beloved clay. Besides the French Open, he also reached the quarter-finals of the Australian Open before falling to Stefanos Tsitsipas.
Nadal has won 88 ATP titles and has earned more than $124.9M in prize money during his career to date.