WORLD No.2 Rafael Nadal has pulled out of this week’s Mexican Open, cutting short his comeback from a hip injury when the problem flared up again.
“My goal and hope were to play in this tournament. Unfortunately, in my last training session yesterday, I felt a sharp pain in my leg again,” said the 31-year-old Spanish star, hours before what was to have been his opening match at the ATP event in Acapulco.
The withdrawal means Nadal misses the chance to reclaim the world No.1 ranking from Roger Federer this week.
I took all the appropriate steps to arrive at the tournament form. I went to Cozumel first, to adapt (to the climate),” he told reporters.
“But yesterday, in my last training session before the tournament, during one movement I felt a sharp pain again in the same area where I had the problem in Australia.”
Nadal, who has not competed since retiring against Croatia’s Marin Cilic in Melbourne last month, was in Acapulco hoping to close the gap on world number one Roger Federer.
“I still don’t know what it is, because we don’t know. It seems it’s not as bad as what I had at the Australian Open,” the 31-year-old added.
“Now my main goal is to find out the extent of the injury.”