Will the retiring Rafael Nadal play in Dubai and Abu Dhabi?

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Ever since he suffered a hip damage on the Australian Open in January, followers of Rafael Nadal have held their collective breath, questioning what life will likely be like ought to the 22-time Grand Slam winner resolve to name time on his profession.

However the legendary Spaniard, who along with Roger Federer held the mantle of headline-grabber for near twenty years, hand enthralled audiences the world over along with his distinctive bravado, has put their minds at relaxation.

Nadal, 36, disclosed at a press convention in Mallorca, Spain on Thursday that 2024 will likely be his closing 12 months on the skilled tour.

Whereas that is dangerous information for die-hard Nadal followers, it additionally signifies that his devotees within the UAE and Center East are more likely to see him in motion one final time earlier than he rides into the sundown.

The Spaniard was set to play on the Dubai Obligation Free Tennis Championships for the primary time in 15 years throughout the February 27-March 4 match, earlier than the stomach damage he suffered on the Australian Open dominated him out for eight weeks.

“I’m not the man who likes to foretell so much (about) the longer term so I am simply following my private emotions and simply following what I actually consider is the precise factor to do for my physique and for my private happiness,” he mentioned on Thursday.

“So that is the factor. I do not need to put myself ready to say one factor after which do one other factor however my purpose, or my ambition, is to attempt to cease to provide myself a chance to get pleasure from subsequent 12 months, that is in all probability going to be my final 12 months on the skilled tour.”

From his earliest years as a youngster and fledgling participant on the talent-rich ATP world tennis tour Nadal has by no means didn’t excite followers along with his gladiatorial model of play utilizing totally different pictures and strategies to overpower even essentially the most gifted rivals.

Greater than something it’s has motivation that has endeared himself to the hundreds of thousands of Nadal followers, lots of them who noticed him as a 19-year-old prodigy conquer the top-seeded Roger Federer 2-6 6-4 6-4 on the Aviation Membership Tennis Stadium in 2006.

It’s conceivable that a few of these followers, together with Colm McLoughlin, Government Vice Chairman and CEO of Dubai Obligation Free, who was instrumental in bringing a teenage Nadal to Dubai, will likely be relishing the prospect of watching him play within the Emirates in his farewell 12 months in 2024.

“My concept and my motivation is attempt to get pleasure from and attempt to say goodbye of all of the tournaments which have been vital for me in my tennis profession throughout this 12 months [2024],” Nadal added on the press convention.

“And simply attempt to get pleasure from that, being aggressive and having fun with being on courtroom, one thing that right this moment just isn’t doable now.”

Ought to he make a full restoration because the 12 months progresses it appears possible that Nadal will return to play in occasions that he missed at Doha, Dubai, Indian Wells, Miami, Monte Carlo, Barcelona, Madrid and Italy.

And, after all, Nadal can be a five-time champion on the Abu Dhabi Mubadala Tennis Championship, a high-profile exhibition match that draws the world’s greatest gamers yearly at the beginning of the season.

Followers within the UAE will likely be ready with bated breath to see if the long-lasting Spanish participant returns to Dubai and Abu Dhabi in his closing 12 months of his wonderful profession.

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