Rafael Nadal has signalled his intentions for a busy summer after confirming that he will be returning to Queen’s Club in June for the traditional pre-Wimbledon warm-up event that he won back in 2008.
The Spaniard, who has been plagued by injury over the last 18 months, became the first player in history to win the French Open and Wimbledon as well as the Queen’s tournament that season, but was unable to defend the title, now sponsored by Aegon, last season.
Persistent tendinitis in his knee meant Nadal failed to participate in the grasscourt season in the wake of his surprise win at Wimbledon, edging out Roger Federer in one of the best matches ever to be played in Centre Court’s lengthy history.
Nadal returned to action at Indian Wells last week, two months after withdrawing from the quarter-finals of the Australian Open when his knee flared up against Andy Murray, and the early signs were good as he despatched Mario Ancic with little fuss.
Of course, there is a long claycourt season to come before Nadal gets to Queen’s, but the excitement of his 2008 treble will mean that his appearance in London is going to be met with a great deal of anticipation from 2010 wimbledon betting experts, not least by the player himself.
"This year there is even more motivation because I could not defend my titles last year." Nadal explained. "No-one was more disappointed than me that I couldn't play because I love those tournaments. It was an amazing feeling to win Queen's in 2008 and then to fulfil my dream by winning Wimbledon.
"To not defend my Wimbledon title last year was one of the toughest decisions in my career, but this is a new year and now I have the chance to go back to England and to compete on the grass again."
Murray and US Open champion Juan Martin Del Potro are also expected to participate giving the tournament more gloss than in recent seasons as players warm-up for the season’s third Grand Slam tournament where Men's wimbledon tennis betting will be as closely fought as ever.