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Rafael Nadal tests positive for COVID-19; Australian Open participation in doubt

Making his comeback at the Mubadala WTC in Abu Dhabi, Rafael Nadal tested postive for the virus upon his return to Spain, putting his schedule under doubt.

Rafael Nadal will be out of tennis action for the next few weeks after suffering a stress rib fracture

Rafael Nadal will be out of tennis action for the next few weeks after suffering a stress rib fracture (Source: Getty)


The Bridge Desk

Updated: 21 Dec 2021 10:51 AM GMT

After making a comeback at an exhibition tennis tournament in Abu Dhabi, 20-time Grand Slam champion Rafael Nadal has tested positive for the COVID-19 virus upon arriving in Spain. Taking to his social handles to inform about the upsetting news, the 35-year-old Mallorcan tennis player mentioned how he has been having a few "unpleasant moments" of late, which has further jeopardized the King of Clay's return schedule now for 2022.

Rafael Nadal clarified that he had tested negative for the virus when he was in Kuwait and Abu Dhabi and only tested positive when he landed back home in Spain. "I am having some unpleasant moments but I hope that I will improve little by little. I am now homebound and have reported the result to those who have been in contact with me," Rafael Nadal informed in a statement.

After playing a thrilling semi-final against Novak Djokovic at the 2021 French Open, Rafael Nadal had been missing from major tennis action as he pulled out of the Wimbledon, the Tokyo Olympics, and the US Open as well, as he was struggling with a foot injury. Before the Abu Dhabi tournament - the Mubadala World Tennis Championships 2021, Nadal had only played at the Citi Open in August. However, Nadal, who was looking for his sixth title here, was also unable to start his comeback journey on the perfect note as he lost both the matches he played in Abu Dhabi; losing to Andy Murray and Denis Shapovalov.

Rafael Nadal (Source: Getty)

Adding to these losses, Nadal also contracted the virus and will therefore now have to re-think his schedule. The chances of Nadal being fit and ready on time for the Australian Open to be played Down Under from January 17th seems a little vague and tricky, at this juncture. "As a result of the situation I have to have total flexibility with my calendar and I will analyse my options depending on my evolution. I will keep you informed of any decisions about my future tournaments," Nadal also mentioned.

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