Rafael Nadal forced to withdraw from Paris Masters, Novak Djokovic to reclaim No. 1 spot

Spain's Rafael Nadal gives a press conference on day three of the Paris Masters, where he announced he would have to pull out of the tournament. (AFP)
Updated 31 October 2018
0

Rafael Nadal forced to withdraw from Paris Masters, Novak Djokovic to reclaim No. 1 spot

PARIS AFP: Rafael Nadal had to pull out of the Paris Masters on Wednesday, guaranteeing Novak Djokovic’s return to the world number one spot.
Announcing his withdrawal at a hastily arranged press conference Nadal said: “My abdominal muscles haven’t felt good for the past few days, especially on serve, doctors recommended that I didn’t play.
“It’s been a difficult year for me in terms of injuries, and so I’d prefer to avoid doing anything drastic,” he told the media minutes before his intended match against compatriot Fernando Verdasco who will instead face Tunisian lucky loser Malek Jaziri.
“It wouldn’t have been good for me nor anyone to return to the court knowing that I wouldn’t be able to play my best.
Djokovic arrived in Paris knowing that he would regain the top spot he relinquished two years ago if he bettered the Spaniard’s performance at the indoor event he has won four times.
The Wimbledon and US Open champion becomes the first player to start the season outside the top 20 and end up top of the ATP rankings since Marat Safin in 2000.
The 14-time Grand Slam champion had begun his pursuit of the top spot in encouraging fashion with a 7-5, 6-1 defeat of Joao Sousa on Tuesday, his 19th consecutive win.
For Nadal it means delaying his long awaited comeback from injury which has kept him sidelined since the US Open.
Nadal was forced to withdraw from his US Open semifinal against Juan Martin del Potro in early September with a knee injury.


Brazil legend Ronaldo attends Arab Club Champions cup final in Al-Ain

Updated 18 April 2019
0

Brazil legend Ronaldo attends Arab Club Champions cup final in Al-Ain

  • The match featured Saudi side Al-Hilal and Etoile Sahel from Tunisia
  • Former Barcelona, Inter Milan and Real Madrid player photographed with Abu Dhabi crown prince

AL-AIN, UAE: Brazilian football superstar Ronaldo was a special guest at the final of the Arab Club Champions Cup, which was held at the Hazza bin Zayed Stadium in Al-Ain.
The former Barcelona, Inter Milan and Real Madrid player was photographed with Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed Al-Nahyan and Saudi Arabia’s Turki Al-Sheikh, chairman of the General Sports Authority.
The match — featuring Saudi side Al-Hilal and Etoile Sahel from Tunisia — was won 2-1 by the Tunisian team, whose Mohamed Methnani scored an injury time winner to take home the trophy for his side.
The tournament is organized by the Union of Arab Football Associations (UAFA) and is contested by elite clubs from the Arab world, including 20 from the Asian Football Confederation and 20 from the Confederation of African Football.
Earlier this week, it was announced by Al-Sheikh that the 2020 edition of the tournament would be named after King Mohamed VI of Morocco.
“I am honored as the President of the Arab Football Federation (to announce) that the second edition of the Arab Champions Cup will bear a name dear to all Arabs, His Majesty King Mohammed VI, may God protect him, who honored us with his approval,” Al-Sheikh posted on Tuesday on his official Facebook page.