21-time Grand Slam Champion Rafael Nadal will make his return to court at the Mutua Madrid Open next week. The Spanish great has been sidelined since the final of Indian Wells in March with a rib injury. Nadal has not played at the event in his home country since 2017 and has won the competition five times. He has enjoyed his best ever start to a season, winning the Australian Open Grand Slam in January and only losing one match so far in 2022.
Nadal will be gearing up to the clay court season which has always been his preferred surface. He has won the French Open Grand Slam an unprecedented 13 times and will be favourite to claim the title when it starts next month. World No 1 Novak Djokovic beat Nadal in the semi-final at Roland Garros last year and went on to win the tournament. Djokovic followed up the French Open to claim the Wimbledon title and win his 20th career Grand Slam. Both men are bidding to be recognised as the greatest of all-time with Nadal currently in the lead with 21 Grand Slam titles.