Arguably the greatest player of all time, Rafael Nadal has time and again pushed his limits on the court. It was no different on Wednesday, as the Spaniard beat Taylor Fritz in the Wimbledon quarterfinals with an abdominal injury.
The Spaniard received a medical timeout and was constantly receiving treatment from the doctor throughout the match.
The extent of the injury was revealed by Spanish newspaper Marca, who reported on the damage to Nadal’s abdominal muscle. The 23-time Grand Slam champion was subject to tests on Thursday morning, according to the report, and will be under the supervision of his coach Marc Lopez.
“Nadal suffers a break of seven millimeters in one of the abdominal muscles and wants to try to play the semifinal,” MARCA reported.
This is not the first time that the Mallorcan has had abdominal injuries. He infamously played in the 2009 US Open semifinals against Juan Martin del Potro with the same injury. Stunningly, the southpaw did not retire from that match either, as the Argentine beat the Spaniard in straight sets with Nadal winning just six games in the entire match.
In his Wimbledon quarterfinal against Fritz, Nadal was asked to retire from the match by his father and sister when he opted to take a medical timeout early in the match.
Speaking in his post-match press conference, Nadal revealed that he’s been suffering from the issue for a while now.
“It’s obvious that today is nothing new. I had these feelings for a couple of days. Without a doubt, today was the worst day. Have been an important increase of pain and limitation. And that’s it. Let’s see what’s going on tomorrow,” Nadal said.
An injury-riddled season for Rafael Nadal
Rafael Nadal has played with injuries throughout his entire career. The most notable injury was to his foot, which has been plaguing the Spaniard since 2006 but was aggravated this year at the French Open. En route to winning his 14th title at Roland Garros, the southpaw had to take numerous painkillers and injections to play through the pain.
Nadal also struggled with a rib injury earlier this year. The Spaniard went up against Carlos Alcaraz in the semifinals at Indian Wells and injured his rib. While he won the match, he lost to Taylor Fritz in the final. He subsequently had a delayed start to the claycourt season due to recovery.
Despite the extreme adversities, Rafael Nadal finds himself in the semifinals of Wimbledon and keeps alive his hopes of a Calendar Grand Slam.