Recuperating Nadal on course for Buenos Aires event

Wed Jan 29, 2014 6:51am EST
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MADRID (Reuters) - Rafa Nadal had taken anti-inflammatories and undergone intensive physiotherapy to alleviate a lower back problem and still planned to compete in Buenos Aires next month, his spokesman said on Wednesday.

The world number one had tests on the injury, which wrecked his chances in Sunday's Australian Open final, in Barcelona on Tuesday followed by the treatment before returning to his native Mallorca to rest, the spokesman said in an emailed statement.

"Next Monday he will have further tests to evaluate the progress of his recovery and to see if he can gradually start training again," he added.

Nadal still intends to play in the clay event in Buenos Aires starting on February 10, followed by the tournament in Rio de Janeiro, also on clay, and the hard court Masters events at Indian Wells and Miami.

Nadal lost to Swiss Stanislas Wawrinka in the Australian Open final, which prevented him drawing level on 14 grand slam singles titles with American Pete Sampras, three short of record holder and great rival Roger Federer.

He needed lengthy treatment at the start of the second set, hit back to win the third but Wawrinka eventually captured his debut slam with a 6-3 6-2 3-6 6-3 triumph.

(Reporting by Iain Rogers, editing by Ken Ferris)

Rafael Nadal of Spain attends a news conference after losing his men's singles final match against Stanislas Wawrinka of Switzerland at the Australian Open 2014 tennis tournament in Melbourne January 26, 2014. REUTERS/Bobby Yip