Australian Open: Rafael Nadal shrugs off injury concerns, pays tribute to Andy Murray

Australian Open: Rafael Nadal shrugs off injury concerns, pays tribute to Andy Murray

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Former champion Rafael Nadal shrugged off concerns about his fitness ahead of the Australian Open and paid tribute to fellow ‘Big Four’ rival Andy Murray, a day after the emotional Briton revealed plans to retire. The 2009 winner Nadal pulled out of the Brisbane International warmup with a thigh strain, raising fears about his campaign at Melbourne Park after his 2018 season ended early with ankle surgery and an abdominal injury.

However, the 32-year-old Spaniard declared himself ready to throw himself into a 14th campaign in Melbourne, starting with a first round match against Australian wildcard James Duckworth.