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Injured Rafael Nadal ‘can’t give a clear answer’ if he will be fit to play Wimbledon semis against Nick Kyrgios

Rafael Nadal is unsure if he will be fit enough to face Nick Kyrgios. Photo: Kieran Galvin/EPA

Rafael Nadal is unsure if he will be fit enough to face Nick Kyrgios. Photo: Kieran Galvin/EPA

Published Jul 7, 2022

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By Sudipto Ganguly

London - Rafa Nadal provided no assurance that he would be able to turn up for his Wimbledon semi-final on Friday against Australian Nick Kyrgios after the Spaniard played through an abdominal injury to beat Taylor Fritz in an absorbing contest.

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Struggling with physical ailment, Nadal appeared close to retiring mid-match on Wednesday on Centre Court but he found the will to beat Fritz in four hours and 20 minutes.

A third Wimbledon title and first since 2010 on the manicured lawns and a U.S. Open triumph at Flushing Meadows would see the Mallorcan claim the calendar slam -- a feat last achieved in 1969 by Australian great Rod Laver.

But there was no guarantee from the 36-year-old that he would be present on Centre Court to keep his historic bid going.

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"I don't know," Nadal said when asked about his chances of playing the unseeded 27-year-old Kyrgios.

"Honestly, I can't give you a clear answer because if I gave you a clear answer and tomorrow another thing happens, I will be a liar."

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Nadal took a medical timeout against 11th-seeded Fritz during his quarter-final outing to get treatment on the injury and said he had to adjust his game to continue playing.

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The Spaniard, however, considered retiring many times during the contest.

"I just wanted to give myself a chance. Not easy to leave the tournament, not easy to leave Wimbledon, even if the pain was hard," the 22-times Grand Slam winner said.

"I don't know. I wanted to finish. I fought. Proud about the fighting spirit and the way that I managed to be competitive under that condition."

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Nadal said he was worried about the injury and he will undergo more scans on Thursday before making a decision about continuing to compete at the grasscourt major.

"I am used to holding pain and play with problems," said Nadal, who played and won Roland Garros with pain-killing injections prior to each match and only confirmed his Wimbledon participation after radio frequency treatment eased pain in his foot.

"Knowing that, when I feel something like I felt, that is because something is not going the proper way in abdomen. But let's see. I had these feelings for a couple of days. Without a doubt, today was the worst day, has been an important increase of pain and limitation," he said.

Reuters

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