The 21-time Major champion has confirmed he is close to a full recovery
Rafael Nadal recently returned to tennis training after spending over a month on the sidelines due to a stress fracture in his ribs. At the end of his session, the Mallorcan revealed that he is close to full fitness and that he intends to be at his best at Roland Garros.
Nadal sustained a stress fracture in his ribs during his semi-final clash against Carlos Alcaraz at the Indian Wells Masters last month. While he managed to play through pain and win that day, he was unable to perform an encore in the summit clash.
After losing to Taylor Fritz in straight sets, he revealed that he struggled to breathe during the match and suffered sharp chest pain. Later, his doctors confirmed the extent of the Mallorcan’s injury and provided a six-week timeline for recovery.
The 21-time Major champion returned to the practice courts a couple of days ago – only four weeks after his diagnosis, and spent an hour trying to regain some of his rhythm.
“I’m almost ready, I’ll be in Paris too and I’ll try to be at the top,” the Spaniard said after the session.
“Today, after four weeks without stepping on a tennis court, first soft training” – Rafael Nadal
The 35-year-old took to Instagram a couple of days ago, revealing that he has resumed tennis training on clay. Nadal missed the Monte-Carlo Masters and the Barcelona Open due to his injury.
The World No. 4 seems to be on schedule with his recovery. While mentioning on social media that the session was a light one, Nadal expressed his delight at returning to his favorite surface.
“Today after 4 weeks without stepping on a tennis court, first soft training,” the Spaniard wrote on Instagram. “What an illusion to step on the earth again!”
Meanwhile, in a recent interview, his uncle and former coach Toni Nadal said that the 21-time Major champion is likely to return to action at next month’s Madrid Masters.
“He (Rafa) told me he was expecting to get to Madrid,” Toni said. “There are 15 days left to see if everything evolves properly and if he can be really fit.”
The Madrid Masters is scheduled to begin on 1 May, three weeks ahead of Roland Garros. The 35-year-old is a five-time champion in Madrid but has not made the summit clash since last winning the title in 2017.