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Rafael Nadal is bidding to extend his record of 22 Slam titles and keep his hopes of claiming a Calendar Grand Slam alive as his Wimbledon campaign kicks off today.
Nadal, who has won two more Majors than rivals Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer, comes into Wimbledon off the back of winning the Australian Open and French Open earlier this year.
Ominously for Djokovic, who won his opening games on Monday against Kwon Soon-woo in four sets, Nadal has said he is also feeling no pain in his foot despite needing painkillers for the discomfort he was experiencing as a result of his chronic condition, Mueller-Weiss syndrome, last month.
The Spaniard had treatment leading up to Wimbledon and it appears to have been a success. Speaking ahead of his opening match on Centre Court against Francisco Cerundolo, Nadal said: “There are a couple of things that are so important. First of all I can walk normally most of the days. When I wake up I do not have this pain I have been having for the last year and a half.
“Practising, I have been overall better. Since the last two weeks I have not had one of these terrible days where I cannot move at all. The feelings overall are positive. I am in a positive way in terms of pain and that is the main thing.”
FOLLOW RAFAEL NADAL’S FIRST WIMBLEDON MATCH LIVE WITH EXPRESS SPORT BELOW…
One minute warning
Centre Court starting to pack out now…
Nadal looking for history
It’s Calendar Slam or bust for Nadal in 2022 it seems. Had he not won the Australian Open or French Open then it’s highly likely he would have skipped Wimbledon to recover from his ongoing foot injury.
But Nadal is a serial winner and has every chance of clinching his third Wimbledon title and keep the dream alive.
Iga Swiatek took little over an hour to brush past qualifier Jana Fett in her Wimbledon opener.
The women’s No 1 seed looks unstoppable at the moment and will fancy her chances of winning a third major title.
Now it’s time for Nadal…
And welcome to today’s live blog for Rafael Nadal’s opening match at Wimbledon.
Express Sport is on Centre Court and will be keeping you up to date throughout the match as Nadal kicks off his campaign at SW19.
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