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Rival questions Nadal injury claims

Italy’s Fabio Fognini has rowed with the Spaniard in the past

Italian star Fabio Fognini has appeared to doubt Rafael Nadal’s injury struggles after the Spanish star overcame Taylor Fritz in a five-set Wimbledon quarterfinal battle on Wednesday during which Nadal seemed to battle with abdominal pain.

Nadal frequently appeared ill at ease during the Centre Court clash with his American opponent, taking a medical timeout off court during the second set and being implored to retire by members of his team and family in the stands.

But Nadal ultimately prevailed in a four-and-a-half-hour contest to set up a Wimbledon semifinal against Australia’s Nick Kyrgios on Friday.


The injury claims did not seem to sit well with long-time rival Fognini, however, as the Italian took to social media with an apparent dig at the narrative surrounding the 22-time Grand Slam king.

Sharing an Italian article about Nadal’s latest feat, Fognini underlined the section which mentioned his injury, adding: “For sure… Guys stop believe in what you read PLEASE!!!”

Former Australian Open doubles champion Fognini, 35, has had run-ins with Nadal in the past, including during the Hamburg Open final in 2015.

Nadal later insisted there was no beef between the pair and that he had “a good relationship” with the Italian, although there appeared to be lingering tensions between Fognini and Nadal’s uncle Toni at the China Open later that year.


Nadal also weighed in when the combustible Fognini was thrown out of the US Open in 2017 because of inappropriate language directed towards a female umpire, with the Spaniard suggesting organizers should have acted more quickly to suspend the Italian.

Read more

Nadal is still in the hunt at Wimbledon. © Clive Brunskill / Getty Images
Nadal defies injury to reach final four at Wimbledon

Despite Fognini’s skepticism, Nadal said after his win over Fritz that he had contemplated not finishing Wednesday’s quarterfinal.

“For a lot of moments I was thinking, ‘Maybe I will not be able to finish the match,’” said the 36-year-old, who was seen with tape on his stomach area.


Nadal also said he could not guarantee he would line up for Friday’s semifinal against Nick Kyrgios, telling reporters: “I don’t know [if I can play]. Honestly, I can’t give you a clear answer. I don’t know exactly what I have.

“It’s clear something’s not right. I’m obviously worried.”

Nadal revealed after his French Open triumph last month that he had played through the tournament with pain-killing injections to help a longstanding foot injury.

Nadal’s win against Fritz keeps his hopes of a Calendar Grand Slam alive after titles in Paris and Melbourne so far this year.


Victory at the All England Club would also give Nadal a third title at the tournament overall and a first since 2010.

READ MORE: World anti-doping chief defends Nadal over injections

In the other semifinal, six-time Wimbledon king Novak Djokovic meets home hero Cameron Norrie, with the Serbian top seed aiming for a fourth successive title at SW19.   

Fognini himself was in action at Wimbledon this year, but bowed out in the first round with a four-set defeat to Dutchman Tallon Griekspoor.   


https://ift.tt/kSuBsid 07, 2022 at 03:13PM
from RT – Daily news

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