Rafael Nadal has wished Alexander Zverev ‘a very fast recovery’ after his opponent suffered a horror injury in their French Open semi-final.
Vying for a spot in Sunday’s final at Roland Garros, Zverev went over on his right ankle with all his weight on it towards the end of the second set, instantly screaming out in pain.
The German was left in agony with a wheelchair brought out so he could be taken off the court.
The 25-year-old eventually emerged on crutches to a standing ovation, signalling to both the umpire and Nadal that he was unable to continue, also taking the chance to shake hands with his opponent.
Nadal had been leading 7-6 (10-8) 6-6 when the incident happened.
Speaking after the match, Nadal said: ‘It is very tough and very sad for him [Zverev]. He was playing an unbelievable tournament. He’s a very good colleague on the tour, I know how much he is fighting to win a Grand Slam.
‘For the moment, he was very unlucky. The only thing I am sure is that he is not going to win just one but more than one. I wish him all the best and a very fast recovery.
‘It had been a super tough match, over three hours, and we didn’t finish the second set. It’s one of the biggest challenges on the tour today when he’s playing at this super high level. It is difficult to say a lot of things in this situation.
‘Being in the final of Roland Garros one more time is a dream, no doubt, but at the same time, to finish that way… I have been there in the small room with Sascha before we came back out. To see him crying, it is a very tough moment. all the best to him and all the team.’
Nadal moves into his 14th French Open final having won each of his previous 13th as he chases his 22nd Grand Slam triumph against either Casper Ruud or Marin Cilic.
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