Rafael Nadal won’t be defending his title in the U.S. Open, announcing Tuesday that he will skip out on the Grand Slam tournament because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Nadal, the 34-year-old tennis pro from Spain, sent out a number of Tweets explaining his decision to withdraw, citing the “complicated” situation and “increasing” risk.
TWINS PRACTICE SOCIALLY DISTANT CELEBRATIONS WITH PHANTOM HIGH-FIVES, HUGS IN FOURTH STRAIGHT WIN
“After many thoughts I have decided not to play this year’s U.S. Open. The situation is very complicated worldwide, the COVID-19 cases are increasing, it looks like we still don’t have control of it,” his tweet read. “We know that the reduced tennis calendar is barbaric this year after 4 months stopped with no play, I understand and thank for the efforts they are putting in to make it happen.”
He continued, “This is a decision I never wanted to take but I have decided to follow my heart this time and for the time being I rather not travel.”
NFL CAN’T ENFORCE BUBBLE PER COLLECTIVELY BARGAINED AGREEMENT, VIKINGS’ GM, COACH SAY
Nadal’s plan to skip the U.S. Open came shortly after the Madrid Open, scheduled for September, was canceled because of the pandemic.
The USTA has given repeated indications it intends to go forward with the U.S. Open, despite the spikes in cases around the United States, saying in a news release last week: “New York State continues to be one of the safest places in the country as it relates to the COVID-19 virus.”
In addition to not being able to defend his title, Nadal misses the chance to equal Roger Federer’s men’s record for Grand Slam titles with 19.
CLICK HERE TO GET MORE SPORTS COVERAGE ON FOXNEWS.COM
Reigning champion Bianca Andreescu and Ash Barty, the top-ranked women’s tennis player, also announced that they would be opting out of the U.S. Open.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.