Rafael Nadal Optimistic For 2019 Despite Withdrawing From Third Place Abu Dhabi Match
by Tom Gainey | December 28th, 2018, 9:26 pm

After an injury-riddled end to 2018, Rafael Nadal is hopeful for good start to the new season.

The 32-year-old who didn’t play after the US Open due to an ab injury and his knee, is in Abu Dhabi this weekend playing the lucrative Middle East exo. And he spoke about his

“I am not making steps back, just steps forward all the time, taking care of my body after a while without having a chance to be on court and trying to do things slowly,” Nadal told the press.

“It’s important for me to protect the body and to avoid tough circumstances,” he added. “I know I have time to be ready for Melbourne at 100 per cent.”

In his opening match at the exo, Nadal fell to Kevin Anderson 46, 63, 64. And then later today opted to not play in the third place match against Dominic Thiem.

“I spent more time on court than what I thought,” Nadal told Sport360.com. “It’s not the moment for me to make a step back, it’s the moment to make a step forward… I suffered a lot in terms of injury. I don’t want to suffer more.

“When you are out since long time ago, I had the surgery a little over a month ago, it’s normal that I have some pains. Being honest, I’m satisfied the way I was playing tennis. I am more or less satisfied with how the body held.”

Nadal will officially return to ATP tennis action next week in Brisbane where he will await either Jo-Wilfried Tsonga or a qualifier.

You Might Like:
Nadal Captures Abu Dhabi Exo Over Tsitsipas
Novak Djokovic, Stan Wawrinka Confirm Return At Abu Dhabi
Abu Dhabi Tennis Exo Schedule: Djokovic, Federer And Nadal Ready For Battle
Abu Dhabi Exo: Rafael Nadal Wins Opener, Andy Murray In Action Friday
Murray Meets Nadal Friday At The Mubudala Abu Dhabi Exo

Don't miss any tennis action, stay connected with Tennis-X

Get the FREE TX daily newsletter

2 Comments for Rafael Nadal Optimistic For 2019 Despite Withdrawing From Third Place Abu Dhabi Match

Van Persie Says:

Could not watch any of Mubadala matches, as they were not on TV, where I am now at least, unfortunately.
Good signs for Nole to win against KK. Kando- Nole next today.

So happy we have tennis again, I miss the matches…

chris ford1 Says:

I’ll be interested to see if Karen Kachanov can keep the form he gained at the end of the season. Shame Rafa cancelled. Then again, why likely fall to Novak and lose a little confidence going into the AO? Stan will be back, though. We shall see how he fares.

Top story: Murray Overcomes Hurkacz In Vienna; Berrettini Gets Into Turin