TENNIS

Injured Nadal to decide whether to play in Buenos Aires

Number one’s Australian Open back problem being treated before start of clay-court tour

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Rafael Nadal receives medical treatment during his men's final match against Stanislas Wawrinka at the Australian Open.
Rafael Nadal receives medical treatment during his men's final match against Stanislas Wawrinka at the Australian Open. MADE NAGI (EFE)

After a series of physiotherapy and anti-inflammatory treatments to alleviate a bone edema in his spine, Rafael Nadal hopes to be fit to play at the Copa Claro in Buenos Aires, which starts on February 10, his spokesman said.

Nadal picked up the injury while warming up before the final of the Australian Open last Sunday. The world number one completed the match but was in obvious discomfort when serving and moving around the court. Switzerland’s Stan Wawrinka won the final in four sets for a maiden Grand Slam triumph.

Nadal returned to action last year in the Latin American clay-court swing after a seven-month injury layoff due to tendonitis in his knee. He reached the final in his comeback tournament in Viña del Mar and then went on to win in São Paulo and Acapulco, where he beat defending Buenos Aires champion David Ferrer in the final.

The world number one also intends to play in the Rio de Janeiro ATP 500 tournament before taking a break from the clay ahead of the US hard court mini-season and Masters events in Indian Wells and Miami.

Nadal will decide whether to enter the Buenos Aires draw next week. “Next Monday he will have further tests to evaluate the progress of his recovery and to see if he can gradually start training again,” the spokesman added.

Despite his lengthy injury from 2012 into the beginning of last season, Nadal went on to win two Grand Slams and regain the number one rank with a 75-7 win-loss record.

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