Nadal confirms Madrid Open participation, US Open in doubt

The defending champion has committed to the Madrid Open, which starts a day after the US Open final

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Rafael Nadal may skip US Open

World No 2 Rafael Nadal as good as confirmed that he will miss the US Open after committing to the Madrid Open in September.

The US Open is set to run from August 31 to September 11, 2020 while the condensed Madrid Open, to be played on clay will start on September 12.

“I talked to my friend Rafael Nadal and he has confirmed his participation in Madrid next September! We wait for you as always with open arms in the Magic Box,” Madrid tournament director Feliciano Lopez wrote on his Twitter page.

“That’s it Feli. See you in Madrid in September. Meanwhile everything goes well,” Nadal replied.

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The Spaniard is the defending champion at the US Open but may choose to skip it given the spike in Coronavirus cases in the country in recent weeks.

With the pandemic wiping more than five months off the tennis calendar, seven tournaments have been scheduled in as many weeks. Even before the US Open ends, the clay swing will begin in Europe as the event in Kitzbuhel will co-incide with the second week of the hard-court Grand Slam.

Two Masters events – in Madrid and Rome—in two weeks will be followed by the French Open, which is scheduled to begin on September 27.

Nadal’s former coach, Toni Nadal, had called the revised ATP schedule ‘unrealistic’, especially for those in their thirties. Former US Open champion, Andy Murray, meanwhile, branded it unsafe for players.

“It’s not safe for players to go from the semi-finals or final in New York… and then play in Madrid at altitude on clay when they haven’t competed for a long time,” the Brit had said last month.

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