Rafael Nadal casts doubt over Wimbledon appearance after Novak Djokovic defeat

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Rafa Nadal has cast doubt on playing at Wimbledon after losing his French Open crown. The Spanish superstar lost a sensational semi-final to Novak Djokovic in only his third ever defeat at Roland Garros.

The 13-time champion insisted Djokovic “deserved to win” in his post-match press conference in English.

And the world No.3 then told the Spanish press that his long-term ankle injury had not caused him to lose – but he will need to rest and he won’t play a grass-court warmup event before the start of Wimbledon on June 28.

Nadal said: “There is nothing with my ankle. The protection was due to my problem in the scaphoid that I have played since 2005.

“When I play according to what type of games it hurts but I am used to it. It has no impact on the result.

“It swells over time and I needed to take it off because the feeling was unbearable. This is all.

“I will not play the Mallorca Championships. I am the age that I am, I would love to play in front of the spectators at home but there is no choice.

“The first reason is because I never play in the week before a Grand Slam. I also don’t feel ready to start training on grass in three days. It is unsustainable.”

With the French Open pushed back a week this year because of the pandemic, there will be only two weeks between the clay-court and grass-court Grand Slams this year.

Asked if his appearance at Wimbledon was now in danger, the champion in 2008 and 2010 said: “I don’t know what I’ll do in my future.

“After two intense months in a positive gravel season without having achieved the final goal, I have managed to achieve two titles.

“The body after so much struggle usually suffers a slump. Wimbledon this year is in two weeks. It’s different from when I was 25 years old. I am 35 and you have to see how I recover in every way.

“I need to digest it all, be calm, take a few days off and go home. We have been locked up in Paris for two and a half weeks and I need to breathe a little, enjoy the good weather in Mallorca and what is going to happen is of little importance ”.

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Djokovic won 3-6 3-6 6-3 7-6 6-2 in four hours and 11 minutes to stop Nadal’s bid to set a new male record of 21 Grand Slam singles titles.

The Spaniard added: “It hurts less after winning here thirteen times. The chances of winning are not eternal but I feel good because I am at a time in my life when I do not have great celebrations or drama of defeat.”

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