"If Rafael Nadal can get 2-3 matches in at Rome, it's as good as it could be" - Andy Roddick on Spaniard's Italian Open chances

Andy Roddick spoke up on Rafael Nadal
Andy Roddick spoke on Rafael Nadal's chances at the Italian Open.

Andy Roddick has had his say on Rafael Nadal's chances at the 2024 Italian Open. The Spaniard has won the prestigious ATP Masters 1000 tournament a record 10 times, and has entered the main draw of this year's edition on a protected ranking.

Nadal managed an injury-free run at the Madrid Open recently, where he reached the Round of 16 before being ousted by eventual semifinalist Jiri Lehecka. While Lehecka defeated the former ATP World No. 1 in straight sets, across the prior rounds, Nadal looked back to his best at times.

The highlight of the 22-time Grand Slam winner's Madrid Open run was his win over No. 10 seed Alex de Minaur in the second round. Now, Nadal's sights are firmly set on mustering a similar, if not better, run at the Italian Open.

Recently, Andy Roddick assessed the Spaniard's chances at the Italian Open during an episode of the Served With Andy Roddick podcast. However, before that, the 41-year-old said that he witnessed Nadal's recent Madrid Open run without worrying if the Spaniard would get injured.

"I forgot to look for injuries at a certain point this week (at the Madrid Open) with Rafa, and it was just watching him play tennis," Roddick said.

Roddick went on to say that if Nadal can manage another run of two or three matches in Rome, the Spaniard would be, to some extent, confident about his chances at the French Open.

"Says he's going to play Rome, which he should. He's won it 10 times, and then I think, if he can get two or three matches in at Rome, I think he's actually, it's not the preparation (for the French Open) that's perfect, but it's as good as it could be," Roddick added.

Rafael Nadal drawn against qualifier in Italian Open first round; will face Hubert Hurkacz if he progresses

Rafael Nadal in action at the 2024 Madrid Open
Rafael Nadal in action at the 2024 Madrid Open

Nadal is set to begin his 2024 Italian Open campaign against a qualifier. While it's still not confirmed which qualifier he will play against, if he beats his first-round opponent, he will face ATP World No. 9 Hubert Hurkacz in the second round.

Hubert, the No. 7 seed, has received a first-round bye. If the Spaniard does go on to face the Pole in Rome, it would be the pair's first ever meeting on the ATP tour.

Hurkacz, similar to Nadal, was eliminated from the Madrid Open in the Round of 16 by another eventual semifinalist in Taylor Fritz.

What is the foot injury that has troubled Rafael Nadal over the years? Check here

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Edited by Sudeshna Banerjee
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