Rafael Nadal Says Foot Injury Will Dictate Wimbledon Status After French Open Title

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured Columnist IVJune 5, 2022

PARIS, FRANCE - JUNE 05: Rafa Nadal of Spain celebrates his victory with the Musketeers Cup after the men's final against Casper Ruud of Norway on Day 15 of The 2022 French Open at Roland Garros on June 5, 2022 in Paris, France. (Photo by Antonio Borga/Eurasia Sport Images/Getty Images)
Antonio Borga/Eurasia Sport Images/Getty Images

Rafael Nadal won his 14th French Open title and 22nd Grand slam title Sunday, but his status for Wimbledon will be determined by a chronic left foot injury that was so bad at Roland Garros that he played in the tournament with "no feeling" in the foot.

"I’m going to be at Wimbledon if my body is ready to be at Wimbledon," he told reporters Sunday. "Nobody wants to miss Wimbledon."

Nadal added that he played the French Open with an "injection on the nerve, so the foot was asleep" during his run to the title, which culminated with Sunday's 6-3, 6-3, 6-0 win over Casper Ruud in the final.

The Tennis Podcast @TennisPodcast

Nadal says he will not take the injection he had for <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/RolandGarros?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#RolandGarros</a> at Wimbledon. <br><br>He will only play Wimbledon if the other treatment he is due to have next week, works.

"As everyone knows in the world of tennis, my preparation was not ideal," he told reporters "Outside of the practice courts I was off the [ATP] Tour for one month and a half with a stress fracture in the rib, and then I have the foot that is something that stays there all the time."

Nadal has Mueller-Weiss syndrome, a degenerative condition that affects the bones in his feet. Last season, the condition cost him appearances at Wimbledon and the U.S. Open, and while he said Sunday that he plans to "keep fighting to try to keep going" in his career, it will come down to his health.

"We need to find a solution," he added. "I can't keep going the way that I am doing."

Through the pain, Nadal moved two Grand Slam titles clear of Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic on the all-time list, with the two men holding 20 apiece. The golden age of men's tennis has seen that trio win 62 of the last 75 Grand Slam titles, a remarkable run of dominance.

Nadal, meanwhile, has won 14 of the past 18 titles at Roland Garros. He's also won both Grand Slams this season, at the age of 36.

Given his injuries, nobody would blame Nadal if he rode into the sunset as arguably the greatest men's player in history. But body permitting, Nadal seems to have more fight in him.