johanne sent in this link – the news doesn’t look good. (skyejaden nabbed the photo from the AP.)
Rafael Nadal still looked hampered by his injured knees in an unsuccessful transition to grass Thursday and will decide Friday whether he is fit enough to defend the Wimbledon title.
Nadal played without tape on his sore knees but frequently looked a step slow in losing 6-4, 6-3 to Lleyton Hewitt in an exhibition match at the Hurlingham Club in London. It was Nadal’s first match after losing to Robin Soderling in the fourth round of the French Open.
Nadal did not speak to reporters, but his uncle and coach Toni said it was still uncertain whether he can play at Wimbledon, which starts Monday.
Nadal plays another match against Stanislav Wawrinka on Friday, and Toni Nadal said the top-ranked player will make a decision after that.
I’m sure articles will continue to poor in. I’ll update here as I find some and/or you guys keep posting them in the comments – thanks!
Nadal looked increasingly frustrated against the hard-serving Hewitt, repeatedly failing to get to balls he normally reaches and struggling with unforced backhand errors. He frequently muttered to himself in Spanish after missed shots and often had to rely on his top-spin forehand to escape trouble.
He did not speak to reporters, but uncle and coach Toni Nadal said it was still uncertain whether he can play at Wimbledon, which starts Monday.
Nadal plays another match Friday against Stanislas Wawrinka. Toni Nadal said the top-ranked player will decide after that. When pressed about Wimbledon, the coach did not sound optimistic.
“If it’s me, I’m [flying] to Mallorca,” he said, referring to the island where Nadal grew up.
Hewitt challenged Nadal from the start, forcing the Spaniard to save two break points in the first game before holding serve. The former top-ranked Australian then managed to break at love for a 3-2 lead after three unforced errors from Nadal. Hewitt held his next service game at love behind a barrage of aces.
Nadal had his first break point in the first game of the second set, but Hewitt saved it with a service winner. Nadal set up another break point at 2-2 with a good forehand volley, but Hewitt made a forehand winner down the line before holding.
Hewitt then broke again for a 4-3 lead after Nadal sent a forehand long, and the Australian converted his second match point after Nadal sent a lunging backhand long.