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Rafael Nadal Withdraws from 2023 Italian Open amid Ongoing Hip Injury Rehab

Mike Chiari

Rafael Nadal announced Friday that he will not compete in next week's Italian Open in Rome as he continues to recover from a hip injury.

Nadal made the announcement on Twitter in Spanish, and his statement translates as follows (via the ATP Tour):

"Hello everyone! I am very sorry to announce that I will not be able to be in Rome. You all know how much it hurts me to miss another one of the tournaments that have marked my professional and personal career. ...

"Despite having noticed an improvement in recent days, there have been many months without having been able to train at a high level, and the readaptation process has its times, and I have no choice but to accept them and continue working. A hug to all."

Nadal was eliminated in straight sets by American Mackenzie McDonald in the second round of the 2023 Australian Open in January. He was limited by a hip injury during the match and has not played in a tournament since then.

The 36-year-old Spaniard is tied with Novak Djokovic for the most career men's Grand Slam singles titles in the Open era with 22.

Last year, Nadal won the Australian Open and the French Open, which gave him the record all to himself, but Djokovic tied him by winning Wimbledon 2022 and the 2023 Australian Open.

Rafa is the most dominant clay-court force in the history of tennis, particularly at Roland-Garros, as he has won the French Open a record 14 times.

The Italian Open has traditionally been one of the main tune-up tournaments before the French Open, and Nadal has won it a record 10 times.

Over the past 18 years, Nadal and Djokovic have combined to win all but two of the Italian Open tournaments played.

With Nadal still out of action, Djokovic figures to be the favorite to win this year's Italian Open, and if he does win, it will mark the second time he has scored back-to-back victories in the event.

Given his love for and excellence in the French Open, it seems likely that Nadal will do everything he can in order to play in the tournament, which starts later this month.

If Nadal has not healed enough from his hip injury by then, it will mark the first French Open without him in the field since 2004.


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