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Rafael Nadal Announces Brisbane Return

Rafael Nadal will launch his comeback in Brisbane the first week of January. Photo by James D. Morgan/Getty Images

The tennis world will ring in the New Year celebrating Rafa’s return.

Rafael Nadal announced today he will launch his comeback in Brisbane the first week of January.

“Hi everyone. After a year out of competition, the time has come to return,” Nadal said in a video posted on his social media channels. “It will be in Brisbane and it will be the first week of January.

“See you there.”

Nadal is a fan favorite, having first played the Brisbane International in 2017, with the tournament providing an opportunity to prepare for the Australian Open.

The 37-year-old was crowned Australian Open 2022 men’s champion after coming from two sets down to beat Daniil Medvedev in a match that lasted five hours and 24 minutes. The epic victory marked his record 21st Grand Slam title. He went on to win his 22nd at Roland Garros.

“We are thrilled to have Rafa make his return to tennis here in Brisbane and know his fans will be very excited,” Brisbane International Tournament Director Cam Pearson said. The combined WTA 500 and ATP 250 tournament will also feature Grand Slam champions Naomi Osaka, Andy Murray, Victoria Azarenka, Aryna Sabalenka and Elena Rybakina, as well as world No.8 Holger Rune, world No.14 Grigor Dimitrov and world No.17 Ben Shelton when it returns to the Queensland Tennis Centre from 31 December to 7 January.

Brisbane will be Nadal’s first competition since he hobbled out of the 2023 Australian Open.

American Mackenzie McDonald toppled the top-seeded and injured Nadal 6-4, 6-4, 7-5 in the 2023 Australian Open second round.

Recovering from the arthroscopic surgery Nadal underwent on the left psoas tendon back on June 2nd, compelled him to pull the plug on his 2023 season.

The 37-year-old Spanish superstar is currently ranked No. 663. Nadal’s Brisbane entry is an encouraging sign for him returning to the Australian Open, which starts on January 14th.