World number one Rafael Nadal's injury concerns were one of the main talking points headed into the new season. A lingering knee injury shortened his runs at the Rolex Paris Masters and the Nitto ATP Finals to end last season and was then followed by withdrawals from the Mubadala World Tennis Championship and the Brisbane International.
The Spaniard will test his fitness ahead of the first major of the year as he has entered the TieBreak Tens event in Melbourne. The event will be played in Margaret Court Arena, which will give everyone an idea of how Nadal looks and how fast the courts in Melbourne Park are playing.
Comebacks For The Injured
Joining Nadal at the event is Stan Wawrinka, Novak Djokovic, Nick Kyrgios, and Lleyton Hewitt. Wawrinka and Djokovic are both coming off long injury layoffs themselves and also have concerns. The Swiss number two lost a key figure in his team as head coach Magnus Norman decided to part ways and also withdrew from the Mubadala World Tennis Championship in order to delay his start to this season, coming off of knee surgery.
Djokovic is coming off a wrist injury which kept him away from tennis since Wimbledon. He was also set to make his comeback in Abu Dhabi like Wawrinka and Nadal but pulled out of the event last minute due to pain in his right elbow. The Serb also withdrew from the Qatar ExxonMobil Open where he was defending champion.
Both Hewitt and Kyrgios are making their season debuts in Brisbane. Hewitt is playing doubles with Jordan Thompson in his first match since coming out of retirement. He will play doubles with Sam Groth at the Australian Open with Groth set to retire after the tournament. Kyrgios had injury issues himself in 2017, battling hip problems throughout the season. He did note so far that he taking care of his body much better so he can avoid injury problems this year.