Rafael Nadal has withdrawn from a Wimbledon men’s semifinal because of a torn abdominal muscle.
The 22-time Grand Slam champion was scheduled to play Australia’s Nick Kyrgios on Friday for a spot in the final but announced at a news conference Thursday afternoon that he was unable to keep playing.
Kyrgios advances to his first final at a major championship and will play the winner of Friday’s semifinal between Novak Djokovic and Cam Norrie.
“Unfortunately, as you can imagine, if I am here, it’s because I have to pull out from the tournament,” Nadal said.
He aggravated the nagging injury Wednesday in his five-set quarterfinal victory over Taylor Fritz. During the match, he had to take a timeout and get medical attention. At the time, both Nadal’s father and sister were urging him from the stands to withdraw.
“I made my decision because I believe that I can’t win two matches under these circumstances,” he said. “I can’t serve. Is not only that I can’t serve at the right speed, it’s that I can’t do the normal movement to serve.”
This ends his bid for a calendar Grand Slam — last achieved on the men’s side by Rod Laver in 1969 — as Nadal had won both the Australian Open and French Open.
“I never thought about the calendar slam,” he said. “I thought about my daily happiness and my daily work.”