© AELTC/Joe Toth/Getty Images

Rafael Nadal announces his withdrawal from Wimbledon at a press conference in London on Thursday.

Nadal Withdraws From Wimbledon Ahead Of SFs

Spaniard struggled with an abdominal injury in quarter-final against Fritz

Rafael Nadal has withdrawn from Wimbledon ahead of Friday's semi-finals due to an abdominal tear, he announced in a Thursday evening press conference at the All England Lawn Tennis Club.

"I have been suffering with pain in the abdominal... there is a tear in the muscle," he said. "I made the decision because I don't believe I can win two matches under these circumstances."

The Spaniard struggled with the injury during his five-set quarter-final victory against Taylor Fritz, but said following the match that the problem started days earlier. Despite his father and sister urging him to retire early in that match, Nadal managed to twice come from a set down to advance 3-6, 7-5, 3-6, 7-5, 7-6(10-4) after four hours, 20 minutes. Nadal's first-serve speed dipped significantly as he compensated for the injury, often dropping under 100 mph.

You May Also Like: Team Says Retire, Rafa Chooses To Inspire

He was set to take on Nick Kyrgios in the semi-finals on Centre Court.

"Not only I can't serve at the right speed, I can't do the normal movement to serve," Nadal explained. "I don't want to go out there and not be competitive enough to play at the level to achieve my goal. And there is a big chance to make the thing much worse."

ATP WTA LIVE | Follow the Pepperstone ATP Race To Turin In Real Time

The withdrawal ends Nadal's bid for the Grand Slam following his titles at the Australian Open and Roland Garros earlier this season. Nadal owns a 35-3 record this season, including four titles. 

Nadal said that by resting now, he hopes to be able to resume his planned schedule within about four weeks. "My hope is in three to four weeks will allow me to do my normal calendar. In one week I will be able to play from baseline without serving. That's a positive thing," the Spaniard said.

Kyrgios, who beat Cristian Garin to advance to his first major semi-final, advances to Sunday's title match with Nadal's withdrawal. The unseeded Australian awaits the winner of the top-half semi-final matchup between Novak Djokovic and Cameron Norrie.

"Different players, different personalities," Kyrgios wrote in an Instagram post, addressing Nadal. "I hope your recovery goes well and we all hope to see you healthy soon."

More stories like this in: