Rafael Nadal has cast doubt on his fitness as he admits he may not feature in the first major tournament of the year, the Australian Open.
The Spaniard has suffered a poor start to the season after he was easily beaten by Andy Murray in Mubadala World Tennis Championship semi final 6-2 6-0.
‘"I also want to play in the Australian Open which is a tournament I like a lot," he said.
"I don't know if that will be the case either, but I am going to work for it. If not I will be playing at Rio and Buenos Aires.’
Just a week later he suffered an even bigger defeat as he was knocked out of the Qatar Open in just the first round 1-6 6-3 6-4 by German Michael Berrer who is ranked 127th in the world.
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Nadal has been plagued by injuries in the last few years with back and wrist injuries. His off season training also suffered a setback after he required surgery to remove his appendix.
"Little things didn't quite work out for me today," he said.
"This is the third comeback of my career after injury, so we will see how it goes in a couple of months. I wanted to start well, but it was not the case today."
Officials at the Sydney International have admitted they are trying to lure the former world number one to play in their tournament.
The tournament takes place just one week before the Open but organizers are hoping he will want to get some court time.
A spokesmen for the Sydney International told the press: “It’s Rafa Nadal, so we’d love to have him.”