Rafael Nadal has cast doubt on whether he will play his Wimbledon semi-final, which would give his last four opponent Nick Kyrgios a free pass to the final. Nadal booked a semi-final place after defeating Taylor Fritz in a five-set thriller 3-6, 7-5, 3–6, 7-5, 7-6 on Wednesday.
His victory means he will now take on Kyrgios in the last four of the famous event on Friday, after the Aussie star saw off Cristian Garín in straight sets to send himself through. But Nadal revealed that he may miss Friday’s mouth-watering clash which would of course hand the walkover to Kyrgios.
Either side of two heroic Grand Slam wins at the Australian Open and French Open, the Spanish stalwart has once again seen his season plagued by injury.
In spite of his remarkable efforts to continue to soldier on at the very highest level, Nadal’s fitness woes were apparent in Wednesday’s win over Fritz, as his family urged the Spaniard to give up as he battled through the pain barrier.
In typical Nadal fashion though, the 36-year-old powered on to victory but faces a race against time to be fit for Friday’s match with Kyrgios. Asked if it was possible to recover for the semi-final, the 22-time Grand Slam champion responded: “I don’t know. I’m going to have some more tests.
“It is difficult to know. I am used to having things and I am used to having pain and playing with problems. Let’s see. It’s obvious that this is nothing new. I had these feelings for a couple of days.”
It has been no secret that the Spaniard has been battling against his body throughout his two weeks at SW19, and giving a worrying update after his match he revealed his post-quarter-final fatigue was his ‘worst day yet’. He went on: “Without a doubt, this was the worst day.
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“There has been an important increase of pain and limitation. I can’t give you a clear answer because if I gave you a clear answer and then another thing happens, I will be a liar.” The Spanish star also addressed his family’s call for him to retire from the match due to the clear pain he was suffering throughout.
“They told me I needed to retire from the match,” he added.It was tough to retire in the middle of the match. Not easy even if I had that idea for such a long time. But on the other hand, I did it a couple of times in my tennis career. It is something that I hate to do it. So I just keep trying, and that’s it. I wanted to finish. And that’s what I did. I’m proud about the fighting spirit and the way that I managed to be competitive under the conditions.”