After a week of training in Mallorca and a few days of filming at the Wimbledon training center, Rafael Nadal took another step forward in his show debut in Hurlingham. The 22 Major champion easily beat Switzerland’s Stanislas Wawrinka (6-2 and 6-3) in the first of the two Tests he will conduct this week ahead of touchdown Main British, which begins next Monday. It was a monologue. Without having to put his foot down, the 36-year-old Spaniard broke through the tender resistance of his rival, a veteran whose sporting rope is definitely running out.
In the absence of a more reliable and complete reading, which will only come when he steps foot on center court and experiments with live fire next Tuesday, Nadal took a handful of good feelings in his pocket. The process was fruitful, resolved in just over an hour and with no setbacks. Wawrinka (37) never messed up and especially the Mallorcan’s left foot didn’t mess up either. Firm in the supports and horizontal movements, also precise in the shots, the tennis player from Manacor continues to collect positive signs to determine his presence in the third major of the season.
“I’m really excited to be back after the pandemic and injury last year. [que le impidió competir de julio a diciembre]. It’s a pleasure to play here,” said Nadal. It had been three years since the Spaniard – accompanied by coaches Francis Roig and Marc López and his physiotherapist Rafael Maymó – had not played a game on the pitch. That was in 2019 in the semifinals against the great Roger Federer. “Being able to play a few games before Wimbledon is good, it helps me for the competition. I used to do that at Queen’s [de categoría 500]but now I’m too old for so many games,” he joked.
The new technique he underwent after conquering Roland Garros – two sessions of pulsing high frequency on the nerves of the injured foot – brings him good results and every day means progress for him. Nadal faces a historic opportunity – no one reaches the Grand Slam [ganar los cuatro majors el mismo año] since Australian Rod Laver in 1969 – although the most immediate present prevails: first Hurlingham, then Wimbledon and later, we’ll see. Now the feelings are positive. Treatment responds and the tennis player wins the shooting.
debuts on Tuesday
“It is the first time in his career that he is able to achieve that, although at the moment we see it a long way off. It doesn’t take away your sleep, you have to go bit by bit. At the moment it is important that he spends time on the track and that his foot is fine,” his coach Carlos Moyà told Eurosport.
Last week, Nadal trained on his island’s Santa Ponça lawn for five days. Later, like in 2018 and 2019, the Mallorcan traveled to London and decided to attend the Hurlingham Exhibition, a charming club in the Fulham borough. Coming out against Wawrinka went smoothly and he will face a new test against Canadian Felix Auger-Aliassime this Friday, the day when the Wimbledon final draw will be drawn and his hypothetical layout will be known. There was not the slightest discussion against the Swiss.
Barring any setbacks in between, Nadal is set to break into the All England Tennis & Croquet Club headquarters next Tuesday (the date of his debut) as the main contender for the title he previously won in 2008 and 2010.