Nadal: “If I am healthy I still have the inner fire to continue and fight”

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The Spanish tennis player Rafa Nadal, current number 6 in the world, assured from Abu Dhabi that his left foot is better, that he hopes to be able to manage the pain and be able to compete again, and is that at 35 years old he considered that he still has “fire inner “to fight for your goals as long as you are” healthy. “

“If I am healthy, I still have the inner fire to continue and fight for my goals,” Nadal said at a press conference in Abu Dhabi, where he will play the Mubadala World Tennis Championship, an exhibition tournament that will mean his return to the courts from the last August.

Nadal will return to the track this Friday at the Mubadala exhibition in Abu Dhabi, when he faces the British Andy Murray or Dan Evans. It will be his first game since his defeat in the ATP tournament in Washington against Lloyd Harris, more than 130 days ago.

“I’m very happy to be back. It’s not about pain. I had pain many times during my career, most of the time, it’s more about having the opportunity to be able to handle the pain to compete well,” he argued.

The Spanish considered that he needs to try to play in competition. “Of course, I feel better, otherwise I would not be here. I know that the comeback will not be easy. I do not have high expectations now. My only expectation is to be here,” he acknowledged.

His wish is to be able to play the Australian Open in January, and before the Melbourne tournament, and without setting goals. “The expectation is to go back to playing in front of a big crowd, to feel like competing against great players again and then to enjoy. It has been a very difficult period for me, honestly, so just being here is great news for me,” he acknowledged.

“I really hope my foot gets better and better to be back to the level I want to be. If I can play without limitations, I want to fight for everything again, so that’s the goal. My experience says that things change very quickly. . What today seems impossible or almost impossible, nobody knows what can happen in a month, “he said in this regard.

The Spaniard said that it will be “very difficult” for him to compete again after spending more than four months without doing it and having to undergo surgery on his left foot. “If things go well, I’m only going to play one tournament before Australia and these two games here, a few hours on the court at a competitive level before such a tough and demanding tournament,” he acknowledged.

In this period of Nadal’s absence, Serbian Novak Djokovic tied with Spaniard and Swiss Roger Federer at the top of men’s tennis with his 20th Grand Slam title, at Wimbledon. If the current number one plays in Melbourne, he will go to the Australian Open as the favorite to win a 10th title and lead the battle for supremacy in this record era.

“I’m out of competition for the last five or six months,” Nadal said. “I understand that the conversation is always there, especially with Novak who has been playing almost every week. Roger and I have been injured for so long. Of course we are even, but Novak’s chances are much higher than ours.” Nadal acknowledged.

After this exhibition in Abu Dhabi, Rafa Nadal’s plans are to play the ATP tournament in Melbourne, from January 3 to 9, the city where he would continue to face the Australian Open, the first Grand Slam of the year 2022 , from the 17th to the 30th of the same month.

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