Sport: Are ATP Finals ill-timed for Nadal? - - PressFrom - Australia
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Sport Are ATP Finals ill-timed for Nadal?

14:20  05 november  2019
14:20  05 november  2019 Source:   skysports.com

Barty beats Bencic in WTA Finals opener

  Barty beats Bencic in WTA Finals opener World No.1 Ashleigh Barty has all but secured her year-end world No.1 ranking after beating Belinda Bencic 5-7 6-1 6-2 in her WTA Finals opener.Unless disaster strikes and she can't walk on court again this week and Karolina Pliskova takes the title, Barty's 5-7 6-1 6-2 win over Belinda Bencic on Sunday night earned the 23-year-old a place in tennis history as the first Australian woman to finish a season in top spot since rankings were introduced in 1973.

Rafael Nadal is determined to reach the season-ending ATP Finals . Nadal was due to play Denis Shapovalov at 4.30pm local time but after no sign of the players, the crowd were told that the Spaniard had pulled out of the match due to an injury sustained in practise earlier in the day.

Spain’s Rafael Nadal today returned to the top of the ATP Rankings for an eighth stint at the pinnacle of men’s professional tennis, exactly 12 months to the day since he completed his 196th and Rafael Nadal today begins his 197th week as World No. 1, one year after he last sat atop the ATP Rankings.

Back on July 10, Rafael Nadal became the first player to qualify for the 2019 ATP Finals. The history books show that his early qualification isn't unusual... but if he takes to court and is victorious, then that would be a very different story entirely. 

'Being No. 1 again would be special,' says Nadal

  'Being No. 1 again would be special,' says Nadal "I prefer to be No. 1 to No. 2," Rafael Nadal said on Sunday.If the 33-year-old Spaniard finishes at No. 1, it would be the fifth time he has ended the year on top of the rankings which would tie Djokovic, Roger Federer and Jimmy Connors.

Rafael Nadal now faces a race to be fit in time for the ATP Finals . PARIS, France – Rafael Nadal pulled out of the Paris Masters with an abdominal injury just minutes before the scheduled start of his semifinal against Denis Shapovalov and admitted his participation at the ATP Tour Finals was in doubt.

Rafael Nadal had to retire from the Paris Masters due to injury, but he will be able to take part in the ATP Finals in London.Following a scan on Nadal has qualified for this elite tournament 15 years in a row, but had to withdraw due to injury on six occasions and didn't want to do so for a seventh time .

Nadal has qualified for the year-end competition for the past 15 years in succession, however during that period of time he has only made it to the final twice.

For someone who has 19 Grand Slam titles, enduring such a 'drought' doesn't quite stack up.

That is until you look at the timing of the competition, take another look at his records leading into it and then factor in the unwavering physicality of the Spaniard...

At the elite level of tennis, physicality and stamina are the sport's cornerstones. For Nadal, his course is fuelled by intense physicality which he couples with his skill and his world-class competitive instinct.

Pictures: Rafael Nadal through the years

The Spaniard gives every fibre of his body to every point, taking his opponent to a level of competition that they cannot match.

Physically, he is the most intense out of all the qualifiers and with that comes the potential for injury as the season rolls on.

In the past three years injuries to the Spaniard's ankle, knee and wrist have either prevented him from stepping onto court at the O2 Arena or have prematurely halted his progression. Prior to that, appendix surgery and another knee issue curtailed his presence.

Now, his withdrawal ahead of his semi-final in Paris will spark concerns that once again he may not make it onto court at the O2 Arena. Or if he does, he may not have the ability to finally break his competition duck and add the title to his current world No 1 status.

Nadal's injury run; a run that has impacted on this competition so strongly, takes nothing away from him as a player or as a Grand Slam winner. Instead, it's purely a matter of physiology and on some occasions, potentially just a matter of bad luck.

De Minaur wins again as Sinner progresses at Next Gen Finals

  De Minaur wins again as Sinner progresses at Next Gen Finals Having finished runner-up at the 2018 Next Generation ATP Finals, Alex de Minaur has made a strong start to this year's tournament.Australian De Minaur, the highest-ranked player at the event, secured a 4-1 4-3 (7-3) 1-4 4-0 victory to follow up on his opening Group A win over Alejandro Davidovich Fokina.

Rafael Nadal has been given the green light to travel to London for the ATP Finals and he plans to train at London's O2 arena tomorrow. The Spaniard withdrew from the Paris Masters semi- finals last weekend because of a stomach injury and admitted he may miss the season finale . But the world No

His relentlessness on court and the way in which he breaks physical boundaries often lead us to believe that he cannot be broken. But, his record at the ATP Finals show otherwise, it's regularly been just one tournament too far.

Following his withdrawal in Paris, Nadal's determination to take to court in London was clear.

"We can call it unlucky, we can call it different things, but it happened," Nadal told atptour.com in Paris.

"And when things happen, the only thing that you can do is accept it. And even if it's a tough situation for me, I need to stay positive.

"It's tough to finish like this, this event [in Paris]. But I need to accept and recover well mentally and physically from that. I hope to be ready for London. That's the biggest goal right now."

Not only is the tournament title on the line, a title that's evaded Nadal for years, but the honour of being year-end No 1 is too.

There are just 640 points between Nadal and Novak Djokovic in the ATP rankings and holding off the charge of Djokovic would mean that the Spaniard becomes the oldest player to finish as year-end No 1 in history.

If the Serbian is to snatch back the position then he knows that going undefeated at The O2, and earning 1,500 points, would give him the best possible to chance do that.

For both individuals duelling for this coveted prize will fuel their competitive instincts and neither will want to gain the position due to external factors such as injuries.

After Matteo Berrettini clinched the final spot, this year's line-up for the ATP Finals has been completed. Group Andre Agassi and Group Bjorn Borg, in whichever form they take, have the potential to throw up some striking matches.

Within the eight-player line-up, Daniil Medvedev, if he manages physically too, could put the cherry on the top of a stunning breakthrough season. Or perhaps Roger Federer will secure his first ATP Finals title since 2011?

When it comes to the Spaniard, the hope is that Nadal can take to court in just a few days time and that he won't have to suffer an all-too familiar feeling of frustration if injury prevents his presence in London again.

Check our news, reviews, reports and reaction at every major tournament by following us on skysports.com/tennis, our app for mobile devices or our Twitter account @skysportstennis.

De Minaur wins again as Sinner progresses at Next Gen Finals .
Having finished runner-up at the 2018 Next Generation ATP Finals, Alex de Minaur has made a strong start to this year's tournament.Australian De Minaur, the highest-ranked player at the event, secured a 4-1 4-3 (7-3) 1-4 4-0 victory to follow up on his opening Group A win over Alejandro Davidovich Fokina.

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