According to sources quoted by the AAP, world number two-ranked tennis player Rafael Nadal has been compelled to pull out of the upcoming Mexican Open, as the hip injury that has been his downfall of late has re-emerged.
“My goal and hope was to play in this tournament. Unfortunately, in my last training session yesterday, I felt a sharp pain in my leg again,” said the 31-year-old Spanish star, hours before what was to have been his opening match at the ATP event in Acapulco.
Nadal had hoped to use the Mexican Open to grab the number one ranking back from Roger Federer, but that hope has now evaporated.
At the rate Nadal and the other top men are falling, it almost appears as though Federer could be a lock to take a calendar-year grand slam, provided he decides to play in the French Open, guards against an unexpected ambush by a young gunslinger looking to slay a Swiss giant, and stays healthy himself.
Nadal was the favourite to win the Mexican Open, even though the tournament switched from clay courts to hard courts in 2013.
“I took all the appropriate steps to arrive at the tournament in form. I went to Cozumel first, to adapt (to the climate). But yesterday in my last training session before the tournament, during one movement I felt a sharp pain again in the same area where I had the problem in Australia,” Nadal told reporters.
He pulled out of the Mexican Open on the advice of doctors, who told him he could make the injury worse by playing until he knows the extent and the cause of the malady.
“I still don’t know what it is, because we don’t know. It seems it’s not as bad as what I had at the Australian Open,” he said. “Now my main goal is to find out the extent of the injury.”
Federer is not in the field for the 2018 Mexican Open.