Rafael Nadal has confirmed he intends to play at Wimbledon.
The 36-year-old has suffered from chronic foot issues in recent years – and the injury flared up again as he won a 14th French Open title. The 22-time Grand Slam singles champion would subsequently travel to Barcelona after that win to begin radiofrequency treatment, which numbs the nerves on a temporary basis.
And Nadal said on Friday that, after reacting positively to the treatment, he will now travel to London, train and take part in some exhibitions before making a final decision.
“My intention is to play Wimbledon, to travel to London on Monday,” he said.
“If I travel it is because I intend to play. My plan is to do a week of training and play some exhibition.
“The joint pain has decreased, but with the treatment strange things happen and sometimes my foot falls asleep.
“I’m happy – on a day-to-day basis I have less pain. We have to wait and see how everything evolves in the coming weeks.”
Toni Nadal – his uncle and former coach – previously said that he expects the 22-time Grand Slam champion to play SW19, but he stressed that a lot depended on the results of the new treatment, with the Spaniard playing through the pain barrier for a number of years.
“I think that he will be and that the treatment goes well,” he said in quotes published by Eurosport Spain.
“He wants to take advantage of the good sporting moment that he is going through and that has led him to be the winner of the two Grand Slams.
“He has had to overcome many difficulties and is still there despite having already won many things and being very successful.
“Since 2005, he has been playing with a lot of pain to the point of sometimes being unable to finish a training session.”
Nadal spoke of the precarious nature of his career during the French, telling a press conference that he is aware of how precious every match is at this stage of his career.
“I am in the quarter-finals of Roland-Garros,” Nadal said. “I am just enjoying the fact I am here for one more year.
“Being honest, every match that I play here I do not know if it will be the last match here in Roland-Garros in my tennis career. That is my situation now.
“I went through a tough process again with my foot. I do not know what will happen in the near future with my career, so I am just trying to enjoy and fight as much as I can to keep living the dream. I hope to give myself a chance to play at the highest level possible and then let’s see.”
Nadal, a winner of 22 Grand Slam singles titles, has won Wimbledon twice, most recently in 2010, which is his longest drought in a Grand Slam.