Rafael Nadal has withdrawn from the remainder of the Laver Cup due to personal reasons, after partnering with his longtime rival and friend Roger Federer in doubles to mark the end of Federer’s career.
The Laver Cup confirmed Nadal’s withdrawal on Twitter on Saturday, adding that he would be replaced by Briton Cameron Norrie. Due to injury, Federer was also unable to play in the rest of the competition and was replaced by Matteo Berrettini.
Nadal and Federer, who have won 42 grand slam titles between them, teamed up one last time on Friday to play in a doubles match for Team Europe against Americans Jack Sock and Frances Tiafoe representing Team World.
Afterwards, pictures of the two men – whose rivalry had transcended tennis – crying next to one another during the post-match ceremony in front of standing ovations and live music from Ellie Goulding, circulated on social media.
Despite winning two grand slams, Nadal’s season has been overshadowed by a foot injury and a more recent abdominal injury that forced him to forfeit his Wimbledon semifinal.
He is also expecting his first child with wife Mery Perello soon, Reuters reported.
“I’m not good, I’m not good,” Nadal told reporters after the match on Friday, according to ESPN. “The truth is these have been difficult weeks in that sense. Few, very few hours of sleep, a bit of stress in general, slightly more difficult situations than usual at home.
“As a result, well, I’ve had to deal with all that, which is a different pressure to the one you’re used to in your professional life. But, well, luckily everything is good and we are much more calm. And in that sense, I’ve been able to come here, which for me was the most important thing.”
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