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Why isn’t Rafael Nadal playing at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics?

, Why isn’t Rafael Nadal playing at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics?

THE Olympics have STARTED after a dazzling opening ceremony in Tokyo – but 2008 gold medal winner Rafael Nadal will not be there.

The Spaniard 35, has had a difficult time with injuries and has had to curtail a big chunk of his summer after making an emotional announcement.

Rafael Nadal at Wimbledon in 2019

Why isn’t Rafael Nadal playing at the 2021 Olympics in Tokyo?

Rafael Nadal is not injured, but has stated that he doesn’t want to take any risks with his body at the age of 35 and will need a break to “recuperate after a long clay-court season”

This year, there is just a two-week gap between the French Open and Wimbledon, compared to three weeks under a normal schedule.

Nadal this year reached the semi-final at Roland Garros before losing an epic to Novak Djokovic.

And he said: “It’s never an easy decision but after listening to my body and discussing it with my team I understand that it is the right decision.

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“The goal is to prolong my career and continue to do what makes me happy.

“It’s never an easy decision but after listening to my body and discussing it with my team I understand that it is the right decision.

“The goal is to prolong my career and continue to do what makes me happy.

“That is to compete at the highest level and keep fighting for those professional and personal goals at the maximum level of competition.

“The fact that there has only been two weeks between Roland Garros and Wimbledon didn’t make it easier on my body to recuperate after the always demanding clay-court season.

“They have been two months of great effort and the decision I take is focused looking at the mid and long term.

“Sport prevention of any kind of excess in my body is a very important factor at this stage of my career in order to try to keep fighting for the highest level of competition and titles.

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“The Olympic Games always meant a lot and they were always a priority as a sportsperson, I found the spirit that every sportsperson in the world wants to live.

“I personally had the chance to live three of them and had the honour to be the flagbearer for my country.”

Nadal won the Olympic men’s singles gold medal in 2008 before winning the doubles in 2016.

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