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'The goal is to prolong my career,' says Rafael Nadal as he pulls out of Wimbledon

Rafael Nadal in practice

Rafael Nadal says he will not play at Wimbledon and the Olympics this summer in an effort to 'prolong his career.'

The Spaniard lost out in the semi-finals at Roland Garros last week, and he has decided there is too little time to now adequately recover in time for the Championships.

Wimbledon will be the second Grand Slam in the last five that Nadal has voluntarily missed after also deciding to skip the US Open last year.

"I have decided not to participate at this year's Championships at Wimbledon and the Olympic Games in Tokyo," Nadal said on Twitter.

"It's never an easy decision to take 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 he maximum level of competition."

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Nadal went on to explain that the unusually short time between the French Open and Wimbledon this year due to the coronavirus pandemic was also a pivotal factor in his decision.

"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.

"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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