Australian Open director Craig Tiley has revealed that Rafael Nadal will be making his return to the game at the 2024 Australian Open. The 22-time Grand Slam champion from Spain has been sidelined since January due to a hip flexor injury and underwent surgery in June. In the past, Nada had his intention to retire at the end of the 2024 season.
But the 37-year-old would not be the only one making a comeback in Australia. Former women’s champions Naomi Osaka, Angelique Kerber, and Caroline Wozniacki are also planning to make their return in January following maternity breaks.
Nadal’s injury woes have kept him off the court for most of the year, raising concerns about his future in the sport. But it is not new. Similar things happened in 2021 and 2022 when Nadal took a break around the time of the French Open/Wimbledon and resumed later.
However, Tiley’s recent announcement has assuaged fears as we would finally get to see the veteran on the court again following his hiatus.
While it is expected that Nadal will make his comeback at the 2024 Australian Open, his representative, Benito Perez-Barbadillo, emphasized that there is no confirmed date scheduled for his return, highlighting the need for flexibility in the timeline.
The 2024 Australian Open will extend to a 15-day event, aiming to reduce late-night finishes at Melbourne Park, addressing concerns raised during previous tournaments. The event is set to feature some of the sport’s most prominent figures, including players making comebacks and those vying for their first Grand Slam titles.
Rafael Nadal, a two-time Australian Open champion, clinched his most recent Grand Slam victory at Roland Garros in 2022. His upcoming return is definitely something to look forward to, especially as the competition among the top-ranked men in the sport continues to intensify, with Novak Djokovic holding the record for the most men’s Grand Slam titles (24).