Nadal pulls out of season opener in Abu Dhabi

Jamie Murray says brother Andy is 'absolutely determined'

Though it was believed that Nadal had been practicing well ahead of the exhibition, rumors about his fitness began to grow earlier this week after Joao Sousa confirmed that the 16-time Grand Slam champion had canceled their scheduled practice session, and it now appears that Nadal needs some extra time to prepare for the new season.

World number one Rafael Nadal's return to competitive action has come under serious doubt after he was pulled out of a five-day training camp in Mallorca this week. EPA/JuanJo MartinRafael Nadal of Spain returns to Karen Khachanov of Russian Federation in their third round match during the Wimbledon Championships at the All England Lawn Tennis Club, in London, Britain, 07 July 2017.

The Mubadala World Tennis Championships were rocked by a third withdrawal as defending champion Rafael Nadal pulled out.

Despite a sour end to his 2017 season, having had to pull out of the season-ending ATP World Tour Finals, the Spaniard can look back at the last 12 months with a sense of satisfaction. Nadal finished 2017 with knee issues and reportedly he's still not 100% ready.

Five-time runner-up Andy Murray hasn't played since Wimbledon and delayed his departure from Britain as he continues to struggle with a chronic hip injury.

The fact he hasn't has raised real concerns over the Scot's ability to contest the Open, let alone genuinely compete.

Rafael Nadal withdraws from the 10th edition of the Mubadala World Tennis Championships. Two-time Open champion and former world No.1 Victoria Azarenka is also mooted for her grand slam comeback after missing the US Open while locked in a custody battle for her son Leo with her ex- partner.

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