London — Rafael Nadal’s hopes of completing a rare calendar year Grand Slam ended Thursday when the Spaniards withdrew from his long-awaited Wimbledon semi-final showdown with Australia’s Nick Kyrgios due to abdominal tensions.
Nadaru was the first consecutive winner of his career at the Australian and French Open this year, aiming to be the first man to complete a calendar year slum since Rod Laver in 1969.
“Unfortunately, I have to withdraw from the tournament,” disappointed Nadaru told reporters at a rushed press conference within 24 hours of the semifinals.
“As everyone saw yesterday (quarterfinals), I’m suffering from abdominal pain. I knew something wasn’t okay there. Yes, it was confirmed. In the abdominal muscles. There is a rift.
“I was thinking about making decisions all day long.”
With the withdrawal of the Spaniards, the unseeded 27-year-old Kirios has become the first Australian to reach the men’s singles final at the All England Club since Mark Phillipsis in 2003.
Nadaru’s father and sister urged him to retire in the middle of a match against American Taylor Fritz during a match on Wednesday’s Center Court, but Nadaru ignored the plea from his box and 4 hours 20 I won a remarkable victory in minutes.
He returned to the All England Club on Thursday and hit a forehand and backhand at the Aorangi Park practice ground in hopes of playing against Kyrgios.
Nadaru, who won the men’s record 22 Grand Slam title, said it didn’t make sense to continue as it was clear that he wasn’t competitive.
“I think it’s clear that injuries get worse and worse as you try to overcome the tough times in your career,” he said. “It’s very sad to say that.
“I made the decision because I believe I can’t win two games in this situation. I can’t serve. Not only can I not serve at the right speed, but in normal motion We may not be able to provide the service. “
Suspicion of fitness
Nadaru suffered a COVID-19 seizure after missing a chunk last season due to foot injuries such as the 2021 Wimbledon and the US Open, leaving questions about his health before the Australian Open earlier this year. Arrived at the open.
However, despite a poor build, the 36-year-old continued to lift the trophy at Melbourne Park.
He then suffered a stress fracture in his ribs at Indian Wells, but played at the French Open and won the title with painkiller injections before each match.
Nadaru only confirmed his participation in Wimbledon after radio frequency treatment relieved his leg pain.
“As I always say, the most important thing for me is that I’m happier than any title, even if everyone knows how much effort I’ve put into being here.” Nadal told reporters at a packed press conference.
“But I can’t risk the match and stay out of the competition for a couple of months because it’s going to be difficult for me.”
By Sudipto Ganguly