Nadal remains on course for March return
Rafael Nadal is on course to return to action in March after undergoing further tests on the hip flexor.
He sustained the injury on his way out of the Australian Open.
The 22-time major winner failed to defend his crown in Melbourne after losing 6-4, 6-4, 7-5 to world number 65 Mackenzie McDonald last week.
Nadal struggled to move around the court in the closing stages of the match and revealed afterwards he had aggravated.
He had been suffering from the injury h for a couple of days.
An MRI scan showed the Spaniard had a grade two iliopsoas tear in his hip flexor, which would usually mean between six and eight weeks out of action.
After returning home to undergo further checks on Thursday, Nadal confirmed he is on course to return in that initial timeframe.
“Today I have been at the Tecknon Tennis Clinic in Barcelona where they have carried out some tests on me,” he posted on his personal Twitter page.
“The Melbourne results are confirmed and the deadlines remain the same. I’ve established the treatments to follow and in three weeks they will perform new tests to see the evolution.”
Nadal faces a battle getting back to full fitness in time for the Indian Wells and Miami Masters 1000 events in March.
Those were due to be preceded on his schedule by a high-profile exhibition match in Las Vegas against Carlos Alcaraz, who is also currently injured, on March 5.
Nadal was distraught to suffer yet another injury setback after severe foot and abdomen problems hit his 2022 season.
“In terms of sports and in terms of injuries and tough moments, I mean, that’s another one,” Nadal said last week.
“I can’t say that I am not destroyed mentally at this time, because I will be lying.”