Rafael Nadal hopes to play Wimbledon despite chronic foot problem

Spaniard, 36, needed crutches to after winning his 14th French Open title almost two weeks ago

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Rafael Nadal hopes that treatment on a chronic foot problem will allow him to compete at Wimbledon in jus over a week's time.

The Spaniard, 36, needed crutches to after winning his 14th French Open title almost two weeks ago and cast doubt in his post-match comments as to whether he would continue if the problem persisted.

But Nadal has been encouraged by the reaction of his foot to nerve treatment and intends to fly to London for a week of practice, including a match at the Giorgio Armani Tennis Classic at Hurlingham, before making a final decision.

“My intention is to play Wimbledon. The treatment and the week of training give me hope, and I wouldn’t go if I had no intention of playing," Nadal told reporters at a press conference in Majorca. "I will travel, play an exhibition at Hurlingham and do a week of training to see if it’s possible.

“Changes are immediately noticeable. Somehow the joint pain that did not allow me to support myself has decreased. I’m happy. I haven’t been limping for a week.”

Nadal, who confirmed he is to become a father for the first time, has not played at Wimbledon since 2019 having missed last year’s tournament after his foot problem flared up.

The most recent of his two titles came back in 2010 and the 22-time major champion has a chance of claiming the calendar Grand Slam having won the Australian and French Opens in the same year for the first time.

Nadal said: “I haven’t played Wimbledon for three years and I’m excited. I don’t know what can happen in five days, I’m cautious, but what has happened so far gives me hope that I can be present.

“Playing Roland Garros well helps my confidence level, but grass is a different surface. I haven’t played on grass for three years and it will be difficult. The first rounds will be crucial. If you pass them, the opponents, they are more difficult, but you play with more security.”

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Updated: June 18, 2022, 8:03 AM