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Injured Nadal eliminated from Australian Open

Spanish tennis star Rafa Nadal’s injury woes continue as he makes his exit from the Australian Open after losing in the second round to Mackenzie McDonald.


Rafael Nadal’s time at the Australian Open came to an end today as he was defeated in three straight sets in the second round by American Mackenzie McDonald, 6-4, 6-3, 7-5. Nadal was struggling with yet another injury, taking a medical timeout towards the end of the second set. This was Nadal’s earliest exit from the Australian Open since 2016.

Nadal’s history of injuries

There has been talk of Nadal retiring soon, as the 36-year-old has been dealing with a slew of injuries for years now.

When he won at Roland Garros last year, he said he had no feeling in his left foot throughout the match due to painkilling injections he was taking for a chronic injury. At Wimbledon, his supporters begged for him to withdraw during the quarterfinals against Taylor Fritz, but he ignored the pleas and won. He then ended up withdrawing before his semifinal match against Nick Kyrgios.

After that, he suffered an abdominal injury at SW19 and played through it at the US Open. There, he lost in the fourth round to Frances Tiafoe and appeared to suffer yet another injury, this time to his rib.

At the Australian Open this year, he made it through the opening round against Jack Draper, but in the second round against Mackenzie McDonald, he looked off. During the match, he was running to pick up a forehand when he hurt his left hip and dropped on the ground. He then limped through the rest of the game, eventually taking a medical timeout before returning to finish the set. Though he was able to make it through and serving well, McDonald eventually secured the break in the third set.

It’s an unfortunate end for Nadal. In the 2022 Australian Open, he made an incredible comeback from two sets down to beat Daniil Medvedev. Later in June 2022, he won a 14th French Open title. Since that Wimbledon injury, however, Nadal has not been the same.

He had already lost his two singles matches of the season before heading into the Australian Open this year, and that injury to the hip seemed to do him in.

Nadal left the match to a standing ovation from the crowd as his wife was in tears and fans stood to watch the top seed wave and exit the stadium. His future hangs in the balance.

Nadal “mentally destroyed” after Australian Open exit

Nadal was clearly distraught as well as in a lot of physical pain after his exit from the Australian Open.

“I feel that I cannot move,” he said. “I don’t know how [bad the injury is] until I do all the tests, I don’t know. It’s difficult to make a resolution, if it’s the muscle, if it’s the joint, if it’s the cartilage, I don’t know.”

“I can’t complain about my life at all,” said Nadal. “In terms of sports and in terms of injuries and tough moments, that’s another thing. I just can’t say that I’m not destroyed mentally at this time, because I would be lying. It’s hard for me.”


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