February 27, 2024

Open Court

MORE TENNIS THAN YOU'LL EVER NEED

BRISBANE, Australia – They lined up early, encircling Court 5 as Rafael Nadal was scheduled to practice there Monday afternoon.

But like just about everything else at the Queensland Tennis Centre Monday, rain scuttled the best-laid plans.

Nadal did come out, racquets in hand (in that old-school way people have at your club where you run one racquet through the throats of the others and just carry them around). He seemed unperturbed about what the rain might do to his new restrings – which is the luxury pros have that the rest of us mere mortals do not.

The fans were game. Unfortunately, it was clear that the court was not playable. And, at this stage, it’s definitely not worth taking the slightest chance of slipping on a greasy practice court.

So while there was at least a sighting (and a few autographs), the whole thing lasted less than 10 minutes.

Nadal will make his return in singles Tuesday night, against Dominic Thiem.

Despite another bad forecast, he’ll be under cover on Pat Rafter Arena. So it should be okay.

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