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Confirmed! Rafael Nadal to compete in 2024 Australian Open
"In talking to him over the last few days he confirmed he will be back," Tennis Australia boss Craig Tiley told Channel Nine's Today.
Published Oct 11, 2023
UPDATE: Now it's official. After Tennis Australia boss Craig Tiley revealed the news of his participation (article below), Rafael Nadal took to social media to confirm he indeed plans to kick off his 2024 season with a trip Down Under to compete at the Australian Open.
"I appreciate the vote of confidence from the Australian Open," the 22-time Grand Slam champion wrote on X, the platform formerly known as Twitter. "I am practicing every day and working hard to come back ASAP."
The 2024 Australian Open—which will start on Sunday as a 15-day event for the first time—will take place January 14-28.
Rafael Nadal fans, rejoice! The Spanish great is officially scheduled to be back in action at the Australian Open, as confirmed by Tennis Australia boss Craig Tiley on Wednesday.
Speaking to Channel Nine’s Today, Tiley revealed the 37-year-old is preparing to compete in the year’s first Grand Slam tournament—dispelling any doubts early retirement amid a season that has seen Nadal sidelined with injury, as he gears up for what appears to be his farewell 2024 season.
When asked a question about Naomi Osaka—whose anticipated return from maternity leave will be another major Melbourne storyline—Tiley highlighted the return of “the greats” to Australia, before dropping the big news about the 22-time Grand Slam winner.
"The return of some of the greats, and those champions who have been off for a couple of years," Tiley told Nine.
"We can reveal exclusively here that Rafa will be back. He's been off for most of the year, and in talking to him over the last few days he confirmed he will be back, which we're really excited about. That's awesome.
"And we know Nick's (Kyrgios) been in training so we expect to see him back."
Nadal has won the Australian Open twice, defeating Roger Federer in the 2009 final and overcoming injury to topple Daniil Medvedev in 2022 for his 21st Grand Slam title—a tally that hit 22 later that year at Roland Garros.
Tiley’s announcement also confirms Nadal’s own comeback timeline. The 37-year-old competed in just one tournament this year, crashing out of the tournament due to hip injury that would derail his 2023 season. Nadal took the entire season off to recover, and announced that 2024 would likely be his last year on tour.
“I just want to give myself the opportunity to compete again for what will be my last year,” he said in May.
“I hope that 2024 is not just a year of simple appearances, but a year where I can win the tournaments I play. It will be difficult, but we have to hope for it.”