Rafa's road to redemption begins this January.
Back in June, tennis fans were shocked to see 100th ranked Lukas Rosol edge his way to victory against No. 1 ranked Rafael Nadal in the second-round of Wimbledon. To further complicate the nightmare scenario Rafa was unable to compete in the 2012 Summer Olympics due to a partially torn patella tendon.
After a combination of physical and mental anguish, Nadal said that withdrawing from the Olympics was “one of the saddest days of my career.” Considering his frustrating circumstances post-Wimbledon, one of the game’s great talents is ready to begin his road to redemption.
Although the Australian Open doesn’t begin until January, it is certainly possible Nadal could return to the game sooner than next year. Colin Stubs, director of the Kooyong Classic, has made it clear (via the Australian.au) that he hopes the talented Spaniard will start his comeback tour at the upcoming exhibition event prior to the start of the Open.
Although Nadal has never participated in the event before, the Classic would be an excellent opportunity for Nadal to shake off some rust before he takes sets his sights on an Open title.
Whether he plays in the Kooyong or not, there is no question the 26 year old phenom is prepared to prove doubters wrong. Considering his brilliance in the past, Rafa is certainly ready to put June’s aberration behind him, but it will certainly depend on him being at full health.
During his stunning upset to Rosol back in June, fans who watched him play noticed he was noticeably slower than he usually is. Known for his explosive lateral quickness and athleticism, it was if something was holding him back from being his usual self. Although no one wants to take anything away from Rosol’s incredible victory, many have noted that Nadal’s knee problems may have gone back further than when he first broke the news just prior to the Olympics.
Assuming his knee is fully healed and he is focused mentally, fans will witness a resurging performance from Nadal as he hopes to bounce back with a second Australian Open victory to pad his résumé.