“The priority is to remove the pain”, doctor of Rafael Nadal gives rib injury update

Angel Ruiz Cotorro, doctor of Rafael Nadal, has given an update on the 21-time Grand Slam champion’s rib injury.

Photo by TPN/Getty Images

Speaking to RadiogacetaRNE, Dr Ruiz Cotorro said:

“We’re going to adapt the work in function of the pain. For now, priority is to remove the pain. Once the pain’s removed we’ll be working as much as we can.”

The doctor had diagnosed the world No. 3 with “a stress crack in the third left costal arch” that he said “occurred in the semifinal match on Saturday in Indian Wells.”

He then said they would be looking to reduce Rafa’s time out depending on how soon the pain disappeared but said the 4-6 week mark had been a realistic one.

“With this in mind and the evolution it has, we’ll see if we can shorten the time, although the 4-6 weeks is quite logical,” he added. 

Sources: Marca, Express


  1. I like the way Rafa sounded as he seemed very confident about the promising timing for his full recovery . With Rafa , mind over matter is extremely strong and one of his admirable attributes that contribute to his remarkable success . The way he struggled to serve against Fritz explains fully his loss as if there was no injury , there would have been another ATP 1000 championship and tying Djokevich .

  2. Just do as you are told by your medical team and be back on courts then sooner hope that it is not the six weeks before you ate play again

  3. No injury or downtime especially when in full flight like Rafa is good.. however, if we want to find a silver lining,… if this heals fast and Rib injury with rest heal in a few weeks (personal experience) may actually give Rafa the rest he so badly needs. I know that his team and Rafa knows best. But was playing IW actually necessary? I personally saw Rafa play Korda and Evans in IW. No way he was 100% even before the finals. No wonder he injured his Rib trying to put in so much against Carlos + Wind as he was not getting out of that match playing like he did against the rest (Korda,Evans,Opelka,Kyrios). He was running into the net behind shots he would not normally against Carlos to negate the wind and shorten the rallies. Its the greatness of Rafa and his problem solving that he can play at 60% max and win against almost everyone.
    Rafa usually plays MC, Barcelna, Madrid and Rome b4 RG. That a LOT of clay court tennis for a 36 yr (Even Rafa). There is no way Rafa would miss MC or Barcelona but for this injury. If this heals I think him playing a few rounds in Madrid and going all out in Rome will have him firing on all cylinders for RG and the US hard court swing. That would be a sight to behold. Praying for Rafa. Rafa in this hard court form he showed in Acapulco and briefly against Carlos will be a beast in RG and USO.

    • i was honestly hoping he would pull out for quarters. he already seemed excausted and needing rest . too bad he didnt – iw was not necessary..

      • Absolutely. I was hoping he would pull out as well. He was borderline sluggish when he played Korda. I have watched Rafa play in person before. This was the first time my 11 yr old kid watched him. I had hyped up his movement, energy and fight for her to watch and learn. Yes he fought like only he can and came back from 2.5 down but he looked every bit like a 36 yr old. You could tell that he was totally spent mentally. How could he not be after what he achieved in just 2 months after being told he may not play again 2 month before that.
        I think he staying with Larry Ellison in his house may have had something to do with feeling obligated especially since he was playing so well. The hype around Rafa at Indian Wells was unreal. He was literally like God when he appeared in the grounds. The difference in stature between him and the rest was just mind boggling. The schedule for the SF and Finals made no sense and would have only made his condition worse.

  4. Hi all…

    As a season ticket holder to the US Open…. I receive emails often about tennis and the upcoming US Open…
    The topics of the emails are vast …some interesting…some…not so much…

    Today I received an email with a VERY INTERESTING article that I thought I would share with you….
    I’m not exactly sure how I feel about it yet….

    The article is titled:

    US Open to Join all Grand Slams in Playing 10 point Final Set Tiebreak…

    Here’s the article….

    More than 50 years after introducing the tiebreak to professional tennis in 1970, the US Open will now implement a 10-point tiebreak at six games all in decisive sets, in conjunction with the Australian Open, Roland-Garros and Wimbledon.

    The Grand Slam Board announced the joint decision on Wednesday, based on a strong desire to create greater consistency in the rules of the game at the highest level. With the goal of enhancing the Grand Slam experience for players and fans alike, the move follows extensive consultation with the WTA, ATP, ITF and tennis officiating community.

    This trial, which has been approved by the Rules of Tennis Committee governed by the ITF, will apply to all Grand Slams across qualifying, men’s singles and doubles, women’s singles and doubles, wheelchair and junior events in singles, and will commence at the 2022 edition of Roland-Garros.

    At the Australian Open, Roland-Garros, and the US Open, the 10-point tie-break will be played in lieu of the final set for mixed doubles, junior doubles and wheelchair doubles. At Wimbledon, the format will remain the same as for the other events.

    Under this trial, if the score reaches six games all in the final set, the match winner(s) will be the first player(s) to win 10 points with an advantage of two or more points.

    The Grand Slam Board plan to review the trial during the course of a full Grand Slam year, in consultation with the WTA, ATP and ITF, before applying for any permanent rule change.

    Hmmm….. Wonder how the players feel about it………

  5. Damn ! Damn ! Damn ! Damnit…..
    This is so frustrating. Its like an injury demon is lurking in the shadows. Moment Rafa starts rolling, it raises its ugly head.
    That said, we have no choice but to take it in the stride, be positive recover and return soon.
    MC and Barcelona are better skipped now so you can get back your stride in Madrid and Rome and get sufficient practice and reach peak form before the FO. FO has to be yours this year, FO is yours this year.
    Rest as you and your team deem fit. Your scheduling was proper, its just bad luck. But as it comes, itll go as well.
    1 month will fly and youll be back soon breaking more records. 14 FOs, 5 USOs, 100 titles and the story will go on………….

  6. Health is the first priority. For 14 🏆 at RG and longer career, 6-week break is worthy. Hope you recover rapidly and see you on court in May. Vamos Rafa, GOAT! ✌

    • In my humble option- Following Rafa’s case closely, I would say that Rafa needs a match before French Open.

  7. Good point regarding how Agassi injured his rib cartilage: however, in Rafa’s case I think I understand it to be the rib bone? If so, I truly wonder if the fracture was created or enhanced while the trainer pushed down with his body weight while Rafa was on his back and wound up like a pretzel. Either way and no matter what, my hope is for a full recovery no matter how long it takes. Hope you can still fish!

  8. How unfortunate that this happened to Rafa at a time when he was playing great tennis. We must stay positive for him. His doctor has been a great support during his injuries. Praying that he will be fully fit by the time Rome comes around. 🇪🇸 ⭐️🙏

    • Shame last match fell 😕😢 all won so far this year. 😃I have just sent him a card ✉ of congrats 😃👑🍐 for Acapulco and wished in Spanish buena recuperacion from the injury 🏥 Listened to Dr Cotorro s Spanish radio Broadcast to inform us, praying that the 4 to 6 weeks will .be shortened 😇😉 Fiona on Paris

  9. With your will the body will heal properly. Once done , your body will not forget all its training and if you want, you will play again. Thebeautiful memories of this start will be with you always!! Enjoy what has been, rest with what is, and hope for more wonder!!! Sail boat rest will do it I am sure!!!

      • I thought that too.
        On the other hand ,he who believes that a rip injury be it a crack or a fracture will be painless in 4-6 weeks….is very optimistic…..

  10. So so sorry to hear of your injury – and you still played the finals!!! Feel soo bad for you! You’ll come back strong again!💪

    My champ just concentrate on getting well. Of course we’ll miss you greatly but your health and fitness is most important!!! Look after yourself and hope to see you again exactly where you left off before the injury.


    VAMOS 🍀🍀🍀😘😘😘

  11. Goodness me – Ash Barty has announced her retirement. Took me by surprise. Good luck to her. Like Rafa – a role model on and off the Court. However, onto our man – Rafa’s doctors know what they are doing. I really hope he will rest up and come back healed towards the end of the clay season. Vamos

    • And she is only 25. I still can’t believe she decided to quit tennis as a No. 1 player in the world. But Marion Bartoli gave an interview to Lequipe and she said something that made me think and understand more Barty. When you reach your goal, secure money for the rest of your life it is very hard to stay motivated for more in tennis.

      Another reason to admire even more Rafa. After all injuries, he comes back each time stronger and more motivated to achieve new goals. With him being almost 36, we really need to enjoy his game.

  12. All the best, Rafa; hope the recovery is smooth and complete. IW final must have been very painful.
    Rest and recharge-👏👍💪🤛🎾🍀❤️

  13. Rafa just for your own sake, and not everyone else’s, don’t as this wise man wants you to do. I wish you a successful healing and that all will be 100% for you to return to the Clay season. You do this for you Rafa….as a huge fan I will be happy with whatever you do. God Bless. Vamos 🇪🇦☘

  14. This is really unfortunate but it happens and it did happen to Andre Agassi in the last point of his match in the 1995 USO semi final vs Becker when he injured the cartilage below his rib cage (technically his floating rib). It happened with one swing of his racquet and was a big reason why he lost the 1995 USO Final.

  15. Rafa is in good hands – thank you so much to Dr. Angel Ruiz-Cotorro for taking wonderful care of our champ.🙏❤️

  16. Rafa
    Que pena que te lastimaste tan bien que iva tu mes. Rezos para tu mejoria pronto. Que Dios te cuide.
    Ty fan #1

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