Tennis-Nadal, Alcaraz to play Olympic doubles, Badosa to skip Games

  • Tennis
  • Wednesday, 12 Jun 2024

Tennis - ATP Masters 1000 - Madrid Open - Caja Magica, Madrid, Spain - May 6, 2022 Spain's Carlos Alcaraz Garfia with Spain's Rafael Nadal after their quarter final match REUTERS/Juan Medina/ File Photo

(Reuters) -Spain's Rafa Nadal and Carlos Alcaraz will team up to play doubles at this year's Olympics in Paris, the Royal Spanish Tennis Federation (RFET) said on Wednesday, but former world number two Paula Badosa will skip the Games.

Nadal won an Olympic singles gold medal in 2008 and a doubles gold in 2016, but the Paris Games will be Alcaraz's first as he returns to Roland Garros where he was crowned French Open champion on Sunday.

Nadal's participation was up in the air with the 14-times French Open champion still not at his best following injuries but national team coach David Ferrer said the 38-year-old would team up with 21-year-old Alcaraz.

"One pair, which I think everyone knows and was hoping for is Carlos Alcaraz and Rafael Nadal and the second pair is yet to be decided, it hasn't been 100% confirmed yet," Ferrer told reporters.

"We'll wait a bit before announcing that. But Rafa and Carlos will be playing together in Paris.

"We have a great team and we are going to play at Roland Garros, the court that Nadal and Alcaraz know so well. We hope to bring joy to Spanish sport."

The other players selected are Pablo Carreno Busta and Alejandro Davidovich Fokina while Marcel Granollers, who is ranked world number two in doubles, is also in the squad.

Sara Sorribes and Cristina Bucsa, Spain's top-ranked players and Madrid Open doubles champions, form the women's team with Badosa not travelling after her ranking plummeted due to injuries.

Badosa can use her protected ranking only at two major events, with the former world number two expected to use it at Wimbledon and the U.S. Open.

"She does not enter with her current ranking (118) because she has been injured for a long time," coach Anabel Medina said.

"This has made her take a very difficult decision, because she was really looking forward to being in Paris."

The Paris Olympics run from July 26-Aug. 11.

(Reporting by Sophie Penney and Rohith Nair, editing by Ed Osmond)

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