Will Nadal skip AO?

Will Nadal skip 2022 AO?

  • Yes, pretty logical.

    Votes: 27 45.0%
  • No, stubborn bull.

    Votes: 33 55.0%

  • Total voters
    60
  • This poll will close: .

BGod

Legend
Simple question, he last did so in 2013 which turned out to be his 2nd greatest season. Last two results have been QFs and he isn't the reigning French champion so......?
 

liriel

Semi-Pro
Big chance he will. Djokovic broke him physically and mentally at the 2021 RG.
I love MichaelNadal post but I truly would say it over and over again "broke him mentally".
His mental game suffered a lot and it's underused on this forum. If he won he'd even try to play some more tournaments because he won on clay, got 21 and nothing more was expected from his so everything else is a bonus + points.
 
Rafa might because he’s not gonna be very match fit going into it. He might plan an early return on clay in 2022 to really try and peak for another french. Unless he thinks he can do damage in Australia and compete for title he may skip at his age and physical condition.
 

Hitman

G.O.A.T.
If he is healthy, I don't see why not? Plus he will play freely without any pressure considering it will be his first event back after so long and he is not really expected to win it. He needs match play if he is healthy.

The question is, will the foot issue go away or not....he's had it a year.
 
Remember in 2016, Rafa played almost no matches after losing 4R at the USO. He played Beijing and Shanghai, losing early both tournaments. Yet he made the final of the 2017 AO with no match play at all for months. But he was 30 then, not 35. Massive difference in tennis terms.
5 years on is a long time. Especially in rafa’s case with his taxing style of play and many injuries. If he’s not 100% by Australia or doesn’t think he can win it wouldn’t surprise me if he skips and just prioritises clay.
 

Hitman

G.O.A.T.
Remember in 2016, Rafa played almost no matches after losing 4R at the USO. He played Beijing and Shanghai, losing early both tournaments. Yet he made the final of the 2017 AO with no match play at all for months. But he was 30 then, not 35. Massive difference in tennis terms.
True, but he also played a good olympics and I think also played Cincy that year, so he did get in quite a bit of tennis.

The gap is a little more this time, essentially nothing since RG really.
 

MichaelNadal

Bionic Poster
5 years on is a long time. Especially in rafa’s case with his taxing style of play and many injuries. If he’s not 100% by Australia or doesn’t think he can win it wouldn’t surprise me if he skips and just prioritises clay.
I think we are overrating this "clay clay clay" thing all the time with Rafa. His level on clay isn't any better than what we saw from him on HC the past year. I don't think surface matters as much as match play and fitness at this point. He was lucky to win anything on clay this year at all, considering the houdini saves on MPs etc
 

Sunny014

Legend
Novak has broken the psyche of the clay bull by owning his buttocks in FO2021
Now he might retire if he loses FO2022
Always knew that he was a weakling mentally, all that it needed was for someone to break him on clay and he would crumble everywhere else.
 

Hitman

G.O.A.T.
I think we are overrating this "clay clay clay" thing all the time with Rafa. His level on clay isn't any better than what we saw from him on HC the past year. I don't think surface matters as much as match play and fitness at this point. He was lucky to win anything on clay this year at all, considering the houdini saves on MPs etc
Yes there is some overrating, but its not just about Rafa on clay as a specific one to one thing, it's that the depth of competition is the toughest on HC, and always has been for decades now. Clay is still where he has the best chances.
 
I think we are overrating this "clay clay clay" thing all the time with Rafa. His level on clay isn't any better than what we saw from him on HC the past year. I don't think surface matters as much as match play and fitness at this point. He was lucky to win anything on clay this year at all, considering the houdini saves on MPs etc
I agree but it will always be the surface he has his best chance on. Simply due to his records and his tennis suits that surface the best. If Rafa wants to pick and choose events to play it’s gonna be clay over hard courts and grass.
 

MichaelNadal

Bionic Poster
I agree but it will always be the surface he has his best chance on. Simply due to his records and his tennis suits that surface the best. If Rafa wants to pick and choose events to play it’s gonna be clay over hard courts and grass.
I think it used to be but idk how I feel about 36yo Nadal slugging it around on clay. It's the surface he will look the oldest on soon too. A lively HC may be better at this point tbh. Like Hitman said, maybe more people can take him out on HC (especially on paper) but tbh I think clay will be hell for him unless he goes back in a time machine.
 

Hitman

G.O.A.T.
I think it used to be but idk how I feel about 36yo Nadal slugging it around on clay. It's the surface he will look the oldest on soon too. A lively HC may be better at this point tbh. Like Hitman said, maybe more people can take him out on HC (especially on paper) but tbh I think clay will be hell for him unless he goes back in a time machine.
What he SHOULD focus on is Wimbledon....he still has more game there than anyone barring Djokovic, think Federer might not return to those levels anymore. He can end points quickly, competition is the most weakiest there right now.
 

MichaelNadal

Bionic Poster
What he SHOULD focus on is Wimbledon....he still has more game there than anyone barring Djokovic, think Federer might not return to those levels anymore. He can end points quickly, competition is the most weakiest there right now.
I agree. I think clay from now on, he's just going to have to hit too many damn balls to be competitive. I could be wrong and he can come out looking like it's 2017, but I can't see it doing his 36yo body any favors. The whole point construction thing I don't think will be good for him anymore, and a lot of the nextgen are blasting super powerful balls on clay now. With Wimby, he might struggle a bit week 1, but I do think he'd have a good chance at if he can get past R4 or so.
 

Hitman

G.O.A.T.
I agree. I think clay from now on, he's just going to have to hit too many damn balls to be competitive. I could be wrong and he can come out looking like it's 2017, but I can't see it doing his 36yo body any favors. He might struggle a bit week 1, but I do think he'd have a good chance at Wimby if he can get past R4 or so.
Yes. We know he has the handskills and touch at the net, plus he moves better on the surface than anyone in the next gen, that much is obvious. He should seriously think about it, and target that third Wimbledon title instead of looking at it like an afterthought. He's been good at W every year since 2017, each time in slam winning form.
 

MichaelNadal

Bionic Poster
Yes. We know he has the handskills and touch at the net, plus he moves better on the surface than anyone in the next gen, that much is obvious. He should seriously think about it, and target that third Wimbledon title instead of looking at it like an afterthought. He's been good at W every year since 2017, each time in slam winning form.
Biggest problem at this point is his ranking o_O
Draws are crucial.
 

InsideOut900

Hall of Fame
I agree. I think clay from now on, he's just going to have to hit too many damn balls to be competitive. I could be wrong and he can come out looking like it's 2017, but I can't see it doing his 36yo body any favors. The whole point construction thing I don't think will be good for him anymore, and a lot of the nextgen are blasting super powerful balls on clay now. With Wimby, he might struggle a bit week 1, but I do think he'd have a good chance at if he can get past R4 or so.
I still have Nadal as the top draw at RG 2022.
I will only change my opinion if he isn't fit by the next AO.
 

TennisFan3

G.O.A.T.
I think he WILL play the AO. If he doesn't, he will probably retire and not play the F.O as well.
If the foot injury doesn't heal until January, it might not heal at all.

I'm tired of this constant TTW Narrative: Of Clay somehow magically curing Nadal and all his troubles are over on it. Clay just suits his game better. Nadal plays well on hardcourts too but HC don't take his spin as well and his ROS gets exposed.

Anyway if Nadal is well, he will compete on hardcourt slams as well. I don't see him becoming a clay only player. If he can't even compete on hardcourts he won't win the FO as well. The clay competition has increased and each subsequent year, he's been playing worse.

I still feel that Nadal should aim to play ALL 4 slams next year. And IF (a big if), he IS healthy, he would have a shot at RG and Wimbledon. But it he skips everything and plays only clay, he won't win RG that way IMO.
 
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irishnadalfan1983

Hall of Fame
Think a lot of it depends on what state of restrictions Australia will be in January...I know it is 5 months but not sure players will be able to fly in and out they normally have done in the past..
 

One

Rookie
Skip AO and go to play in South America clay. 2 or 3 tournament, then skip IW and Miami and go to Europe clay swing. If his body cant survive that, then he will call it a carrer. Mark my words.
 

Nadal_King

Hall of Fame
My only wish is Rafa plays all 4 slams next year which means he stayed healthy throughout apart from that results we will see
 

nachiket nolefam

Hall of Fame
I think we are overrating this "clay clay clay" thing all the time with Rafa. His level on clay isn't any better than what we saw from him on HC the past year. I don't think surface matters as much as match play and fitness at this point. He was lucky to win anything on clay this year at all, considering the houdini saves on MPs etc
Lol
 

Pandaman

Rookie
Big chance he will. Djokovic broke him physically and mentally at the 2021 RG.
This x1000. All we heard through the QFs was how Nadal was in sublime form and going to roll through everyone - media AND fans. Then he comes out guns a blazing, looks great the first 3-3.5 hours of the match, sliding around like Michelle Kwon, retrieving drop shots like they were a warm-up drills, and finally starts to look tired in the 4th. What does that tell you? Like my boy @Halba says, he can't play long matches anymore. He got beat on his best surface while healthy, then murdered in the last set while he was feeling the pain Novak inflicted upon him. Remember what Martina said after the 2nd set? Something to the effect of "this is grueling, physical tennis. One of these guys is not going to be able to keep this up and will get tired". That guy was...Ralph.

I hope he comes back 100% again at next year's FO, so Novak can take him out...again. @Djokovic_is_the_best#1

Edit: People rejoiced after Nadal's 3 set W over Novak at Rome. No one cared to consider reality: Novak played 2 matches and 5 hours the day before, and 3 matches and 8 hours total across those 1-1.5 days. Then at this year's RG, he spent more time on court and back to back 3.5 hour matches leading up to the semis....and we're making excuses for Ralph? Give me a break.
 
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DjokoLand

Hall of Fame
No he will do a 2019 come back bash everyone while looking great and Djokovic looking crap then in the final he will be pasted
 
This x1000. All we heard through the QFs was how Nadal was in sublime form and going to roll through everyone - media AND fans. Then he comes out guns a blazing, looks great the first 3-3.5 hours of the match, sliding around like Michelle Kwon, retrieving drop shots like they were a warm-up drills, and finally starts to look tired in the 4th. What does that tell you? Like my boy @Halba says, he can't play long matches anymore. He got beat on his best surface while healthy, then murdered in the last set while he was feeling the pain Novak inflicted upon him. Remember what Martina said after the 2nd set? Something to the effect of "this is grueling, physical tennis. One of these guys is not going to be able to keep this up and is going to get tired". That guy was...Ralph.

I hope he comes back 100% again at next year's FO, so Novak can take him out...again. @Djokovic_is_the_best#1
Yeah Novak definitely mentally crushed Rafa as well as physically. Rafa still hasn’t got over that loss.
 

DjokoLand

Hall of Fame
Big chance he will. Djokovic broke him physically and mentally at the 2021 RG.
I’m not sure mentally. Nadal always mentally fights but RG 21 was the first time I seen him physically done on Clay. If he won that 3rd set he would of gained the momentum and mentally would of done him loads, but I still think Djokovic wins in 5.
Nadal always fights but you could see his mind was willing but the body was weak
 
Yes there is some overrating, but its not just about Rafa on clay as a specific one to one thing, it's that the depth of competition is the toughest on HC, and always has been for decades now. Clay is still where he has the best chances.
This is so true. Rafa is goat on clay, but you have to also ask the level of competition on clay which is low. Same is true of Wimbledon which is why Djokovic may win 2-4 more of those alone due to low level of competition. Hard court is a whole different situation. Many players play a much higher level there. Medvedev is looking scary good for how much he thrashed an in-form Carreno Busta,
 

Pandaman

Rookie
This x1000. All we heard through the QFs was how Nadal was in sublime form and going to roll through everyone - media AND fans. Then he comes out guns a blazing, looks great the first 3-3.5 hours of the match, sliding around like Michelle Kwon, retrieving drop shots like they were a warm-up drills, and finally starts to look tired in the 4th. What does that tell you? Like my boy @Halba says, he can't play long matches anymore. He got beat on his best surface while healthy, then murdered in the last set while he was feeling the pain Novak inflicted upon him. Remember what Martina said after the 2nd set? Something to the effect of "this is grueling, physical tennis. One of these guys is not going to be able to keep this up and will get tired". That guy was...Ralph.

I hope he comes back 100% again at next year's FO, so Novak can take him out...again. @Djokovic_is_the_best#1

Edit: People rejoiced after Nadal's 3 set W over Novak at Rome. No one cared to consider reality: Novak played 2 matches and 5 hours the day before, and 3 matches and 8 hours total across those 1-1.5 days. Then at this year's RG, he spent more time on court and back to back 3.5 hour matches leading up to the semis....and we're making excuses for Ralph? Give me a break.
And sorry, to actually answer the question posed in this forum (I did not see this addressed):
If this injury is as bad as everyone says it is, and he wants to keep competing at a high level for a few more years like he says, it may require surgery. Tennis puts immense stress on your feet - not just running, but the propulsion force on serve. He already tried over a month off of it and it didn't work. If he got a procedure, it could be months before he can go full speed. At that point, do you really want to come back during the AO with only a month of strengthening and practice mixed in? I'm sure him and Moya will look at changes to play style, too.

Clay 2022 may just make more sense, but it won't be because he's trying to maximize the clay season. As @TennisFan3 said, that's not a winning formula.
 
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