World No.2, Rafael Nadal has already confirmed his presence at the ATP Cup and Australian Open as a part of his schedule for the first quarter of the year.
In a statement given out by tennis journalist Michal Samulski, the Spaniard recently stated that he is looking forward to returning to the ATP 500 event at Rotterdam this year.
The 34-year-old will play in Rotterdam for the first time since 2009, where he entered as World No.1 and lost to Andy Murray in the final.
Along with the 20-time Grand Slam winner, the likes of Daniil Medvedev, Kei Nishikori, Stan Wawrinka and Jannik Sinner have confirmed their participation too. Tournament organizers are hoping for the Swiss maestro, Roger Federer to choose Rotterdam as the venue for his much-awaited return to tennis after a year.
Rafa bears an opportunity to reach 21 Grand Slams at Melbourne
Currently tied with Federer at 20, Rafa can become the out-and-out record-holder for most Grand Slam titles if he lifts the trophy in Melbourne. The only player to narrow down the Spaniard’s chances is World No.1 Novak Djokovic who is an eight-time champion in Melbourne.
Glory in Melbourne will also mean that the World No.2 will become the first male player since Roy Emerson to win two titles at each of the four Grand Slam events.
Despite having a reasonably good record at the opening Major, Nadal has won the trophy only once in 2009; beating Federer in the final. In his last four appearances, the 34-year-old has reached the final on two occasions – losing to Federer and Djokovic in 2017 and 2019 respectively – and reached the quarterfinals in 2018 and 2020.
Currently quarantining in Adelaide, the Spaniard is undoubtedly one of the favorites to win the title in Melbourne.