Rafael Nadal announced that he would not be competing at the upcoming Barcelona Open. The 22-time Grand Slam winner, has been dealing with an ongoing hip injury and cited that he is still in the preparation process for his return, and that the injury is still affecting his ability to compete.
This news casts doubt over his participation in the French Open, which is set to take place in May. Nadal is the defending champion of the tournament, and it is a significant event for him.
Unfortunately, he has been out of action since his Australian Open second-round loss to American Mackenzie McDonald. During that match, he aggravated his hip injury, which has been plaguing him for a while.
The 36-year-old Spaniard had to withdraw from several tournaments due to the grade 2 injury in the iliopsoas muscle in his left leg. He was not able to compete at the Indian Wells Masters and Miami Open, as well as the ongoing Monte Carlo Masters. It is unclear when he will return to the court, and his fans are eagerly waiting for updates on his recovery.
"Barcelona is a special tournament for me because it's my adopted club and because playing at home is always a unique feeling," Nadal tweeted.
"I'm still not prepared and therefore I'm still in my preparation process for the return to competition," he added.
The Barcelona Open, where Nadal is a 12-time champion, starts on Monday and is one of the last big clay-court events before the French Open begins in Paris on May 28.
Earlier, the Spaniard had fallen out of the top 10 in the ATP rankings for the first time since 2005 after missing nearly three months on tour. This year he has played four matches -- two at the United Cup and as many as at the Australian Open and lost three of them. His only win came against Britain's Jack Draper in the first round at Melbourne Park.
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