• ATP Tour

Nadal to make Middle East return

ESPN staff
November 25, 2012
Rafael Nadal will return to action at the Mubadala World Tennis Championship © Getty Images

Rafael Nadal will put the finishing touches on his Australian Open preparations in the Middle East as he prepares to make his long-awaited return from injury.

The world No. 4 has not played since his shock second-round defeat to Lukas Rosol at Wimbledon in June after struggling to shake off a knee injury.

Nadal will take part in the Mubadala World Tennis Championship - a six-man exhibition event at the end of December, which also features world No. 1 Novak Djokovic and US Open champion Andy Murray - before making his competitive return at the Qatar Open in January.

"Nadal is returning to competitive tennis since his knee injury at Wimbledon so everyone is looking forward to seeing what he brings," tournament director Karim Alami told Qatari newspaper The Peninsula.

Nadal, who returned to training in Mallorca last week, will be the top seed in Doha. "I am making progress and I hope to continue to do so," the 11-time grand slam champion said.

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