Rafael Nadal will take no part in the season-ending Nitto ATP Finals in London as a result of an abdominal injury.
The abdominal injury caused the Spaniard to withdraw from the Rolex Paris Masters last week, a move which saw Novak Djokovic reclaim the ATP No.1 ranking.
In a statement on social media, Nadal revealed that he is still suffering from the injury and will take time off the sport and also have an ankle surgery (which he’s had already and it was successful).
“It has been a complicated year, very good at the tennis level when I was able to play, and at the same time very bad as far as injuries are concerned.
“Unfortunately, I had the abdominal problem in Paris last week and, in addition, I have a free body in the ankle joint that has to be removed in the operating room today.
“It is true that we had detected it for a long time and from time to time it bothered me. However, since the problem in the abdominal muscle also prevents me from playing in London, we take advantage of the moment to remove the free body and avoid future problems.
“This way I hope to be in full condition for the next season.”
Nadal had the surgery to remove the free body on Monday and will now hope to return in full shape for the 2019 season.
Update on Rafa: "The patient Rafael Nadal has undergone arthroscopy surgery on his right ankle to remove a floating body/piece. The procedure, which has been carried out by the doctors Vilaró & Ruiz-Cotorro, has gone normally" https://t.co/M60lsRRUpw
— Genny SS (@genny_ss) November 5, 2018
America’s John Isner will replace take the Spaniard’s spot at the eight-man ATP Finals in London next week.
This year, Nadal has had to pull out of 10 tournaments for a combination of hip, knee, stomach and ankle problems, as well as fatigue, and also had to retire through injury in his Australian Open quarter-final and US Open semi-final.
As a result of Nadal’s absence in London, Novak Djokovic will end the year as the world number one for the fifth time in his career, drawing level with Roger Federer and Jimmy Connors.