Body first, ranking later, says Nadal after ankle surgery

Body first, ranking later, says Nadal after ankle surgery

The Spaniard opted not to play his second match at an exhibition event in Abu Dhabi last week after tweaking his thigh and is anxious about the risk of exacerbating the problem. I tried to play, I wanted to play, but recommendations from the doctors (were otherwise),' he told reporters.

"I really believe that I have to keep having tennis to play in my career, and I really feel that my body is not going to get worse every year".

"If I play like I played previous year, I played so well all the tournaments that I played, and at the end I have a chance, fantastic".

In a press conference to announce his decision, the 17-time major champion said "I did an MRI and it shows a small staring on my left thigh".

The Australian Open in Melbourne runs from 14-27 January.

"I had a good off season, as I said before".




"I feel good, but after a long period of time without competing, I felt the leg tightening a little bit in Abu Dhabi in the first match", he said, adding, "that's why I didn't play the second (match)".

Taro Daniel will replace Nadal in round two against Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.

Despite an injury-curtailed 2018 season, Nadal managed to win five titles a year ago, including a record-extending 11th French Open title that took his Grand Slam tally to 17. In fact, After not playing the final for the 3rd place at the Mubadala World Tennis Championship, he pulls out also from the Brisbane International where he was seeded no.1. "After all the things that happened to me, probably I am not ready to assume that waste".

The 32-year-old Spaniard will nurse the "dangerous" injury he picked up playing in Abu Dhabi in late December until he possibly lines up next week in the hit-and-giggle FAST4 Showdown in Sydney next week.

"For me it's a big goal to be ready for there (Australian Open) and I'm going to fight for it (title win)".

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