Rafael Nadal was thumped by Juan Martin del Potro in the semis of the US Open on Sunday, losing 2-6, 2-6, 2-6. After the match he gave full credit to his opponent, but also came clean on the abdominal injury that’s obviously been bothering him all tournament:
I am very happy how I came back, but, now I had the first problem of the abdominal in Montreal after the match of Petzschner second round. I must gonna explain because I say during the week I prefer to didn’t speak about the injury during the week because I am in tournament right now.
I can say after Montreal I was doing a test. I did a test in Montreal, and the doctor didn’t see a lot, but the pain is still there. Cincinnati, the pain increase a little bit more. After the semifinals against Djokovic, I went to do an MRI, and I had some edema, strained muscle, and I think during these two weeks the strain is converted into a little bit of rupture, no? A little bit break.
Yeah, was tough to play few matches like this. But at the same time, was important for maybe play this tournament, try my best. It’s one of the most important tournaments of the year, and I had to try, no?
He said the injury made it difficult to deal with the windy conditions during the semifinals, especially on his serve:
I start to playing well, but when I played against the wind, I can’t serve a little bit faster, no, and I can’t change a lot of directions.
But when I was serving to the middle in the advantage, and I can say I really can’t serve outside in the deuce, no? I only can serve in the middle, because if I serve it outside, the abdominal kill me, no?
So when I play against the wind was very difficult, no?
Tennisreporters.net reports that the injury is a 15 millimeter long abdominal tear and may require a one month lay-off. Rafael Nadal has pulled out of this month’s Davis Cup semi against Israel, to be replaced by Juan Carlos Ferrero. (Spain has a deep bench, no?)