Rafael Nadal told reporters in the lead-up to Wimbledon that treatment on a chronic foot injury has been effective of late (h/t ESPN's Tom Hamilton).
"The feeling and overall feelings are positive ... because I am in a positive way in terms of pain, and that's the main thing,"
Nadal, 36, has won a men's record 22 Grand Slam singles titles. He's won the first two majors this year in the Australian Open and French Open.
He's excelled this year despite suffering from Mueller-Weiss syndrome, a degenerative disease that causes foot pain, which forced him off the ATP Tour for five months in 2021.
Days have been better for Nadal of late as he manages the injury, although he said he can't be "super happy" right now with it being unknown how the ailment may affect him down the road.
"Well, is obvious that if I am here, it's because things are going better. If not, I would not be here. So quite happy about the things, how evolved. I can't be super happy because I don't know what can happen.
"First of all, I can walk normal most of the days, almost every single day. That's for me the main issue. When I wake up, I don't have this pain that I was having for the last year and a half, so quite happy about that. And second thing, practicing. I have been in overall better, honestly, no? Since the last two weeks, I didn't have not one day of these terrible days that I can't move at all. Of course, days better; days a little bit worse."
Nadal previously revealed that he needed pain-killing injections in his foot just to play in the French Open.
"That's why I was able to play." 💬💉<br><br>In a Eurosport exclusive, Rafa Nadal has revealed that medical injections meant he played the French Open final with no feeling in his foot!<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/RolandGarros?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#RolandGarros</a> | <a href="https://twitter.com/RafaelNadal?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@RafaelNadal</a>
Ultimately, the injury is something Nadal will have to deal with for the foreseeable future. At this point, it's a matter of whether the treatment can enable him to play tennis.
"I can't tell you if I going to be in that positive moment for one week, for two days, or for three months," Nadal said. "Of course, the treatment that I did, didn't fix my injury. Not improving my injury at all but can take out a little bit the pain. That's the main goal."
Nadal is halfway to a calendar-year Grand Slam right now. He'd be the first professional tennis player to do so since Steffi Graf accomplished the feat in 1988.