Rafael Nadal tests positive for Covid-19 after arriving home in Spain from his comeback tournament in Abu Dhabi

Rafael Nadal said on Monday he had tested positive for COVID-19 upon arrival in Spain after making his comeback from injury in the Mubadala World Tennis Championship exhibition event in Abu Dhabi last week.

Photo via Mubadala World Tennis Championship

“On my return home after playing the Abu Dhabi tournament, I have tested positive for Covid in the PCR test that was performed on me when I arrived in Spain.

“Both in Kuwait and Abu Dhabi we passed controls every two days and all were negative, the last being on Friday and having the results on Saturday.

“I am having some unpleasant moments but I hope that I will improve little by little. I am now homebound and have reported the result to those who have been in contact with me.

“As a consequence of the situation, I have to have total flexibility with my calendar and I will analyze my options depending on my evolution.

“I will keep you informed of any decisions about my future tournaments! Thank you all in advance for your support and understanding.”

Rafa had planned to play in an ATP tournament in Melbourne before competing at the Australian Open, which starts on 17 January.


  1. Thanks Ramara. I’m not saying that Rafa should have had the booster already. Even three shot vaccinated people are experiencing break through infections. My larger point is that this is bad timing for all of us but particularly so for the AO.

  2. I have a couple of thoughts on Covid and Rafa’s situation. We know that Rafa had the two shots. In the U.S. Dr. Fauci warns that two shots won’t stop the Omicron variant from causing a break through” infection. Its unclear to me whether two shots will limit the symptoms to being “mild” in normally healthy people. Thus Dr. Fauci recommends the third shot, the booster.

    I’m not a Doc but Rafa’s comments that he had “uncomfortable moments” could suggest “mild” symptoms. I obviously hope its no worse than that.

    More broadly, the Australian government takes covid extremely seriously. Even with the vaccination requirement for people entering the country its doubtful that such measures will stop the Omicron variant. In other words, I don’t think that any athlete coming in for the AO will be safe from infection.

    These are my views only. I’m interested in what others have to say.

    • The 3rd “booster” anti-covid vaccination is recommended in the USA six months after your 2nd shot. I don’t think it’s been six months since Rafa was vaccinated.

      • That’s right Ramara ~ in the US you need to wait 6months for the booster. I tried to get my booster but was turned away because it was too soon~My thoughts on Rafa is that he will be ok as he is in optimal physical condition with no commodities~ However this virus is unpredictable & Moya ended up being very ill & stated he almost went to the hospital. Being that Rafa & Moyer were traveling together one would assume that they were exposed to the same varient.I haven’t heard anymore about Rafa just that he had very uncomfortable moments~Here in the US the Omicron variant has become the dominant strain which is less dangerous but a lot more contagious~

  3. Carlos Moya has also tested positive in spite of being double vaccinated. Stated that he had strong symptoms at first but is feeling better now. Get well soon Charly. There may be a silver lining in this cloud. Many experts believe that vaccinated individuals who had breakthrough cases of COVID may acquire what they’re referring to as super immunity. Fingers crossed that this will be the case.🤞

  4. Of all people, Rafa has always been circumspect and always supportive of every measure designed to help mitigate and overcome the virus and this pandemic. The fact that he still got infected shows nobody is immune from this insidious virus.

    Still, I’m optimistic that Rafa will get well soon and fully recover. God doesn’t abandon those who have always been good and kind to other human beings, and Rafa has always been like that all his life.

  5. Tellement désolé pour vous Rafa…..je vous admire depuis le début de votre carrière…Vous étes le plus grand champion à mes yeux….Humilité,,simplicité…modestie et j’en passe ….je vous aime tant.

  6. Sometimes things happen to help in making decisions, not just on hope or wants. I know you will pay good. attention to all that comes your way. You are too precious to ignore health as the most important factor in life. Takd good care!!!!

  7. Aw Rafa..so sorry to read this news. Please get well soon. Sending my best wishes and that the Lord will heal you soon. 🇪🇸☘😍

  8. Hopefully this is the asymptomatic version and that Rafa is fully vaccinated with the booster . Crazy setback but the good news is Rafa looked well and showed decent tennis readiness in Abu Dabai in losses to Murray and Shapa . This is promising but championship tennis will require better performances . That should happen barring the unforseen like covid and injuries .

  9. Get well, Rafa. Omicron is moving like lightning. There is no magic bullet yet, and there are no favourites. Events must be re-examined; if they proceed, it must be with extreme caution. It seems Rafa is not a careless individual. Stay healthy and vigilant.

  10. I am so sorry for him – he’s been off injured all these months, and then this happens after his first two matches back. We know that he’s been vaccinated, so hopefully he won’t be badly affected, but I think the players are due to leave for Melbourne on the 27th so that’s not going to work out. So sick of this horrible virus!

  11. Wishing Rafa a full recovery, Hoping that Maria, Papa, Maribel and all the team who accompanied him on the trip are COVID free, The schedule is not the most important concern right now. Love to everyone.❤️

  12. What rotten luck for Rafa!! Wishing him all the very best for a compete recovery from this dreaded virus. Health comes first always!

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