Rafael Nadal announced this Friday that he will return to professional tennis at Brisbane International tournament during the first week of January 2024, just days before the Australian Open. The Spanish star has been out of competition for a year due to injury.

“Hello everyone, after a year away from competition, the time has come to return. It will be in Brisbane, and it will be in the first week of January. See you there,” said Nadal in a very emotional video posted on social media to announce his return to the courts.

Nadal, winner of 22 Grand Slams and just behind Novak Djokovic on that list, played his last match on January 18, when he fell in the second round of the Australian Open against Mackenzie McDonald. Since then, he has been undergoing a recovery process for a grade 2 injury in the left psoas iliac of the leg, for which he underwent surgery.

“I don’t think I deserve to end like this. I believe I’ve put in enough effort throughout my entire sports career for my conclusion not to be in a press conference. I will strive to make sure my ending is different.”

When will Rafael Nadal return?

The Brisbane International tournament will take place from December 31st to January 7th next year, leading up to the Australian Open, which is scheduled from January 14th to 28th in Melbourne. The first Grand Slam of the year was the last event in which Nadal participated.

Nadal underwent arthroscopic surgery on June of 2022 to repair a left psoas tendon injury. Additionally, an old injury to the hip labrum was also treated in that procedure. The estimated recovery time at that point was five or six months and, as expected, the legend will be ready to play in 2024.

In October of this year, the director of the Australian Open, Craig Tiley, revealed that Nadal would be back to play in Melbourne in the 2024 edition of the tournament. Now, it’s official.

“We can exclusively reveal that Rafa will be back. He’s been off the courts for most of the year, and in talking to him in recent days, he confirmed that he will return to the Australian Open, which excites us a lot. It’s incredible.”

Rafael Nadal will try to chase Novak Djokovic

Rafael Nadal is 37 years old and, in 2024, he will have two major goals in the final stage of his career. First, he will aim to close in on Novak Djokovic pursuing the record for the most Grand Slam titles. The Serbian has already reached 24, while the Spanish player currently holds 22.

The other significant challenge will be the Olympic Games in Paris. The tennis venue for the major sporting event of 2024 will be Roland Garros, Nadal’s favorite court.

Therefore, the gold medal in singles is a strong possibility, and in doubles, thousands of fans are eagerly anticipating an epic partnership with Carlos Alcaraz.

SURVEY Will Rafael Nadal win another Grand Slam in his career?

Will Rafael Nadal win another Grand Slam in his career?