Dhe 20-time Grand Slam winner Rafael Nadal will not take part in the All England Championships at Wimbledon this year – and will also not start at the Olympic Games in Tokyo. The Spaniard gave his health problems as the reason. “It’s not an easy decision, but after listening to my body and talking to my team about it, I understand that it is the right decision,” he shared on Twitter.
Nadal failed in the semi-finals of the French Open last Friday against the eventual tournament winner Novak Djokovic. With that, “two months of great effort” had come to an end for him, emphasized Nadal. The fact that this time there was only a two-week break until Wimbledon because of the postponement of Roland Garros did not “make it easier for his body to recover after the always demanding clay court season”. Nadal had won Wimbledon in 2008 and 2010.
Above all, Nadal regretted his decision not to attend the Olympic Games. They “always meant a lot” to him and enjoyed “priority” in his sporting life. He always found the “spirit that every athlete in the world wants to live”. Nadal took part in three Olympic Games, in 2008 he won gold in singles in Beijing, and in 2014 in Rio de Janeiro he carried the Spanish flag at the opening ceremony, “an honor”, as he wrote.
However, the 35-year-old is not thinking of an end to his career. His decision to forego Wimbledon and the Olympics should be seen “in the medium and long term”. It is rather his “goal to extend my career and continue to do what makes me happy, namely to compete at the highest level and continue to fight for these professional and personal goals at the highest level”.