By Ros Satar
- Rafael Nadal will start his 2017 season in Brisbane
- Breaks from starting his season in the Middle East
BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA – The Brisbane International will boast 14-time Grand Slam champion Rafael Nadal in the season opener.
After an emotional come-back at the Rio 2016 Olympics after a wrist injury, Nadal has his eye on 2017, switching from his traditional start in the Middle East and signing up to the Brisbane International.
In a statement on the tournament website, Nadal said: “It’s going to be the first time in my career that I’m going to play in Australia the first week of the season and I’m really excited about it.
“I think this is something I have to do during my career and I think at the same time it’s going to be a great preparation to be in Australia early. Everybody who has been in Brisbane has told me very beautiful things about the tournament and the place so I want to try it.”
With his inclusion in the 2017 edition, all of the Big Four have appeared in the season opener, Down Under, as part of their Australian Open preparations.
Fans will be in for a treat, according to Brisbane International Tournament Director Geoff Quinlan.
“We’re thrilled to announce Rafael Nadal will start his season in Brisbane in 2017 and can’t wait to welcome him to Queensland Tennis Centre,” he said.
“The Brisbane International has a reputation for attracting the biggest names in world tennis and we’re really excited our fans will have the chance to see Rafa in action this summer. We’ve been in talks with Rafa for a number of years about competing in Brisbane, he’s seen the event get bigger and better every year and we’re ecstatic he’s decided to join the field in 2017.
“This is just the start of a very exciting line-up of players we will announce over the coming months as we look ahead to Brisbane International 2017.”
It is great news for the tournament, who lost Roger Federer to Hopman Cup in 2017, where he will partner Belinda Bencic in the team event.
The Brisbane International presented by Suncorp takes place between 1-8 January.
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