Rafael Nadal injury update: World No. 1 cleared for ATP Finals

By @saihoops on
Rafael Nadal, Cincinnati Masters
Aug 10, 2017; Montreal, Quebec, Canada; Rafael Nadal of Spain hits a backhand against Denis Shapovalov of Canada (not pictured) during the Rogers Cup tennis tournament at Uniprix Stadium. USA TODAY Sports / Eric Bolte

Rafael Nadal will compete at the forthcoming ATP World Tour Finals (Nov. 12-19) in London, contrary to earlier reports that the Spaniard would skip the last Masters event of the season due to a knee injury. Carlos Moya, Nadal's coach, confirmed Thursday that the World No. 1 was ready for the ATP Finals.

Nadal pulled out of the Rolex Paris Masters before his Round of 8 match against Serbia's Filip Krajinovic to recover from a knee injury. The 31-year-old was reportedly experiencing discomfort in his right knee during his Round of 32 victory over Uruguayan Pablo Cuevas.

“Rafa is fine, the knee is OK. He stopped (the Paris Masters) just to take no risks. Rafa will be competitive in London because it’s the only big tournament he hasn’t won," Moya told reporters on Thursday during a coaching workshop in Milan. 

Rafael Nadal injury update: Carlos Moya confirms return

There were genuine concerns that all four members of the sport's Big 4 would miss the prestigious year ending ATP event. World No. 2 Roger Federer cited a back injury and withdrew from both the Paris Masters and ATP Finals, passing up an opportunity to challenge Nadal for the World No. 1 crown. Federer needed to win both events to have a shot at finishing World No. 1 for the first time since 2009. Andy Murray, the 2016 ATP Finals winner, and three-time London winner Novak Djokovic haven't played competitive tennis in three months.

It has been a sensational comeback story for Nadal. Last year, he suffered a first round exit at the Australian Open before suffering early defeats at the French Open and US Open, besides skipping the Wimbledon due to a wrist injury. “I expected Rafa to be No.1 again. I’m not surprised because I’ve seen him training as usual with lots of passion. His tennis and his mind has taken him to No.1," Moya added.

At 31, Rafael Nadal will become the oldest player in rankings history to finish a season at World No. 1. Nadal will be presented the trophy at the Nitto ATP Finals (Nov. 12-19).