‘Hopefully Rafael Nadal plays in Madrid next year, he is the most beloved player in the tournament, says Feliciano Lopez

ATP player and Madrid Masters tournament director Feliciano Lopez expects that his countryman Rafael Nadal will show up at the event next year in the Spanish capital.

Rafael Nadal
Rafael Nadal

20-time Grand Slam champion Rafael Nadal is already recovering from his foot problems and is keen to return to the tour in 2022. Ahead of the 2021 US Open, the Spaniard had announced that he will be missing the remaining part of the season.

Currently, Nadal is spending time with family and friends in his beloved Mallorca, where he will soon begin the training session for his journey ahead. Once the former World No.1 returns to the circuit, he will be focusing on his preferred clay court swing, which will begin in various part of Europe.

As we have seen over the last 15 years, Nadal loves playing the Monte Carlo Masters, followed by ATP 500 Barcelona, Madrid and Rome Masters, before heading to Paris for the French Open.

Talking about the Mutua Open in the Spanish capital, tournament director and ATP player Feliciano Lopez expressed his desire on how he would like to his friend and the King of Clay take court in Madrid.

Rafael Nadal
Rafael Nadal

Speaking at an event, in renewing the stay of the Madrid until 2030, the southpaw opined, “We hope to see Rafael Nadal in the next edition. He is still young and has shown that he can overcome injuries. He will be welcome because he is the most beloved player in the tournament.”

In addition to Nadal, Lopez also hoped that he would love to see former champion Roger Federer take part at the marquee event in May 2022.

“I hope Federer also recovers because that will mean that we have all the best available for the tournament,” Lopez added.

Nadal hasn’t won Madrid since 2017

Rafael Nadal
Rafael Nadal

While the Swiss maestro has won the Madrid Masters twice- on clay, Nadal has won the tournament on five different occasions. That said, the local favourite doesn’t have a very promising record at the Madrid Masters, given his clay court dominance, across other European cities.

The 35-year-old hasn’t won the Mutua Madrid Open since 2017, and the two years he was dumped in the quarters and semis respectively. This year, Nadal was downed by Alexander Zverev in the quarterfinals. The German ended up winning the tournament.

Also read: “It will be hard but I will never say that it is impossible” Roger Federer speaks about Novak Djokovic’s Calendar Slam attempt