It was certainly a long shot for 2013 U.S. Open champion Rafael Nadal to appear in this year’s U.S. Open considering he has been unable to play since his loss at Wimbledon due to a wrist injury. That does not take away from the fact that it will certainly be a disappointing tournament without the No. 2 ranked tennis player in the world.
Nadal made the smart move to not play in matchups leading up to the U.S. Open with the hope that it would allow his wrist to heal faster. Unfortunately, avoiding the tuneups had no effect on his progress, at least not enough for him to play. Nadal was forced to withdraw from the tournament due to the injury.
“I am very sorry to announce I won’t be able to play at this year’s US Open — a tournament on which I’ve played 3 consecutive finals in my last participations,” Nadal said in a statement on Facebook. “I am sure you understand that it is a very tough moment for me since it is a tournament I love and where I have great memories from fans, the night matches, so many things.
“Not much more I can do right now, other than accept the situation and, as always in my case, work hard in order to be able to compete at the highest level once I am back.”
Nadal brings an excitement to the game that not many other players do. For that reason, he is regarded as one of the fan favorites in the sport. Not having his fire this year at the U.S. Open will surely damper the mood of the Grand Slam.
The 28-year-old is 44-8 with four singles titles this season, including the French Open. He is the only player in the history of the sport to win at least one Grand Slam per season for 10 consecutive years. He also has 14 Grand Slam titles, which ranks him second all-time behind only the great Roger Federer.