Boris Becker believes Rafael Nadal’s lengthy absence from tennis won’t change how other players view the Spaniard. Nadal, who turned 37 in June, hasn’t played since this year’s Australian Open. After basically missing the entire 2023 season, Nadal is hoping to return at the start of the 2024 season and play his final year on the Tour.
Although Nadal has been suggesting recently that expecting him to win next year might be a bit unrealistic, Becker believes the former world No 1 “will always be a hunted man.” “First of all, it’s good news that he wants to play and is on the practice court.
It will be a long, rocky road back. The young wild ones don’t sleep. They don’t say: ‘Nadal, it’s nice that you came. We’ll let you win now,’ He will always be a hunted man,” Becker told Eurosport’s Das Gelbe vom Ball.
Becker: I think Nadal could win big tournaments again
Nadal, a 22-time Grand Slam champion, has a long history of making successful comebacks to tennis after injury breaks.
But this time looks to be the most challenging situation Nadal has ever faced. “Rafa is one of the most important players of all time, and a player like that has to stop on the court, not because of an injury. The family has to play along, he has a wife and now also a small son.
Everyone has to join in to support him. Nadal should go back on the court and play well. As far as I’m concerned, he can win big tournaments again,” Becker said. Recently, the Australian Open organizers said Nadal would play at Melbourne Park in January.
Addressing the claim, Nadal confirmed he is hoping to play at the Australian Open but also underlined that he is still not fully sure if he will be able to do so.