Nadal withdraws from Indian Wells Open

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Rafael Nadal has withdrawn from the Indian Wells Open as he continues his recovery from a hip injury.

Nadal sustained the injury during his straight-sets defeat to Mackenzie McDonald at the Australian Open in January, struggling to move around the court during the closing stages of the contest in Melbourne.

A day after that match, the Spaniard wrote on Twitter: "I have carried out medical tests after the defeat yesterday. The MRI shows a grade two lesion in the iliopsoas of the left leg. Now it's sports rest and anti-inflammatory physiotherapy. Normal recovery time six to eight weeks."

It seems that Indian Wells, the first ATP Masters 1000 event of the season, has come too soon for the 36-year-old, and it remains to be seen if he will be able to compete at the Miami Open later in March.

The tournament's director, Tommy Haas, said on Tuesday: "We wish Rafa continued healing, and hope to see him back at the BNP Paribas Open next year."

Nadal reached the final of last year's tournament at Indian Wells, where he lost to American Taylor Fritz.

He has won three titles at Indian Wells, but the last came back in 2013.