Rafaen Nadal in action at Indian Wells earlier this year
Rafael Nadal is currently sidelined with a rib stress fracture that he sustained in Indian Wells following his semifinal match against compatriot Carlos Alcaraz. The Spaniard’s brilliant start to the year was halted by the rib injury and the 35-year-old lost his first match of the season as a result, losing to Taylor Fritz in the final.
Nadal is currently recuperating from his injury, but the 21-time Grand Slam champion made time for a group of young boys in Mallorca as the island’s famous sportsman posed for pictures with a group of boys participating in the East Mallorca Cup.
The East Mallorca Cup is a football tournament held yearly in Mallorca, with the the age category in the tournament including kids from under-11 to under-15 and they are divided in 90 teams amongst 1800 participating kids. The tournament concluded on April 17th and was held very close to the Rafa Nadal Academy.
Nadal had already withdrawn from the Monte-Carlo Masters and is now skipping Barcelona as well. Nadal will likely return to the Masters event in Madrid, which begins on May 4. The Spaniard lost to eventual champion Alexander Zverev in the quarterfinals in last year’s event and will come into the tournament as the favorite.
Rafael Nadal’s dream start to 2022 season hit by injuries
Nadal in action against Taylor Fritz
While Rafael Nadal’s season hit yet another roadblock due to his injury, the Spaniard had a dream start to the season with a title in the Melbourne Summer Set. He then beat the likes of Adrian Mannarino, Matteo Berrettini and Denis Shapovalov to reach the Australian Open final where he faced Daniil Medvedev. After dropping the first two sets against Medvedev, Nadal mounted an improbable comeback and captured a record 21st Grand Slam title.
Rafael Nadal then competed at Acapulco, where he once again had to see off Medvedev in the semifinals en route to his fourth title in the Mexican city.
With his injury in Indian Wells, the 35-year-old Spaniard was told by his doctor to rehabilitate, rest and recover, with the timeline for a return set at four-to-six weeks. Rafael Nadal will now come into the claycourt season with over 2000 points to defend. He will drop 180 ranking points from his 2019 Madrid Masters semifinal run and 1000 points each from 2021 Italian Open and 2020 Roland Garros respectively.