Nadal confirms participation in Queen's Club Championships


FILE PHOTO: Tennis - Australian Open - Quarterfinals - Rod Laver Arena, Melbourne, Australia, January 23, 2018. Spain's Rafael Nadal in action during his match against Croatia's Marin Cilic. REUTERS/Edgar Su

(Reuters) - World number one Rafa Nadal will return to this year's Queen's Club Championships in what will be the 10th anniversary of his memorable triumph that served as a prelude to his maiden Wimbledon title.

Nadal came into the 2008 event on the back of his fourth French Open title and beat Serbia's Novak Djokovic in the final at West London. He then outlasted his great rival and defending champion Roger Federer in five sets at Wimbledon.

"It is going to be the 10th anniversary of my victory there in 2008, it's a great memory, winning there and three weeks later winning Wimbledon," Spaniard Nadal said in a video posted to the tournament's Twitter account.

"It was an unforgettable year. I am excited to be coming back and playing Queen's again... I can't wait to be there."

Nadal last played the Wimbledon warm-up event in 2015 and lost to Alexandr Dolgopolov in the opening round. He pulled out of the event in the last two years due to injuries.

The 31-year-old retired with an injury in the fifth set of his Australian Open quarter-final match against Croatia's Marin Cilic last month.

Three-times grand slam champion Andy Murray, who underwent hip surgery last month, is targeting a comeback at the event he has won five times, the organisers said.

The tournament will be held from Jun. 18-24.

(Reporting by Shrivathsa Sridhar in Bengaluru; editing by Amlan Chakraborty)

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