Rafa Nadal’s desperate search for MRI scan at three hospitals days before Wimbledon clash

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Rafael Nadal sought out an MRI scan, presumably for his abdominal injury, three days before he came close to retiring against Taylor Fritz in Wednesday’s quarter-final. The Spaniard has confessed that he is unsure whether he will be able to take to the court for his semi-final against Nick Kyrgios after suffering his “worst day” with the injury yesterday.

Nadal was close to retiring from his match against Fritz on Wednesday as he battled through an abdominal injury, having been seen with taping in the area for his last couple of matches. He came through in five sets but revealed after the victory that he “had that idea [to retire] for such a long time” in the match and confirmed his dad and sister were urging him to quit.

The second seed is now in doubt to recover in time for his semi-final match on Friday. When asked whether he will be ready to play, he told reporters: “I don’t know. Yeah, tomorrow I going to have some more tests. But difficult to know.” And Express Sport now understands that Nadal was desperately seeking an MRI scan on Sunday – three days before the Fritz match.

The Spaniard defeated 27th seed Lorenzo Sonego on Saturday night for a dominant 6-1 6-2 6-4 win, but Express Sport has learned that Nadal requested an official tournament driver to take him to a hospital on Sunday seeking out an MRI scan, attempting to be seen at three different hospitals in London. Express Sport has reached out to Nadal’s agent for comment.

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Nadal played again on Monday, earning another straight-set victory over Botic van de Zandschulp and refused to answer questions after reporters spotted taping on his ab, saying: “I am a little bit tired to talk about my body. It’s not about that I don’t want to answer your question, but in the same time sometimes I am tired about myself, all the issues that I am having. I prefer to not talk about that now. Sorry for that.”

After beating Fritz, he confirmed he would be seeking more tests and scans following his quarter-final victory to discover the extent of the injury but is due to practice on one of Wimbledon’s smaller show courts at 12.30pm on Thursday – less than 18 hours after he finished his match. 

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He admitted he was used to playing through pain when discussing the injury on Wednesday evening but said there had been a significant change in the amount of pain it caused him during his quarter-final. “It’s obvious that I am not the kind of player that I didn’t have a lot of things in my tennis career, so I am used to have things and I am used to hold pain and to play with problems,” he said.

“Knowing that, when I feel something like I felt, that is because something is not going the proper way in abdominal, no? But let’s see. It’s obvious that today is nothing new. I had these feelings for a couple of days. Without a doubt, today was the worst day. Have been an important increase of pain and limitation. And that’s it, yeah. I managed to win that match. Let’s see what’s going on tomorrow.”

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