Text size:

  • Small
  • Normal
  • Large
Rafael Nadal won the Wimbledon singles title in 2008 and 2010.
Rafael Nadal won the Wimbledon singles title in 2008 and 2010.
Venus Williams has won the Wimbledon singles title five times.
Venus Williams has won the Wimbledon singles title five times.

Wimbledon round-up: Rafael Nadal seeded fifth this year

Back injury forces Venus Williams to pull out of the season's third grand slam tournament, which starts on Monday.

Rafael Nadal was named fifth seed for Wimbledon on Wednesday, leaving his major title rivals to ponder meeting the 2008 and 2010 champion as early as the quarter-finals.

Nadal, the holder of 12 grand slam titles, and fresh from his record-breaking eighth French Open triumph in Paris (see picture gallery), was seeded behind compatriot David Ferrer who takes the fourth seeding.

Novak Djokovic, Andy Murray and Roger Federer take the top three places.

Wimbledon uses recent grass-court performances as well as the world rankings to seed players and Nadal was not promoted after he suffered a stunning second-round defeat to Lukas Rosol at the tournament in 2012.

Ferrer, meanwhile, was a quarter-finalist last year, having already claimed the title at the s'Hertogenbosch grass-court event in the run-up to London.

As a consequence, Nadal could face 2011 champion Djokovic, seven-time winner Federer or Murray, bidding to become Britain's first men's champion since Fred Perry in 1936, in the last-eight.

"I'd sign up to be in the quarter-finals against Rafa if someone offered me that," Murray told the BBC. "You could say if I get through that match, then the semi-final might not be as tough but if you want to win the biggest tournaments you have to beat the best players in the world.

"It doesn't really matter where they are in the draw."

Nadal has also kept his own expectations low at this year's tournament after opting to skip playing in any warm-up tournaments.

In the women's singles, Serena Williams – the world No 1 and a five-time champion – takes top seeding, followed by Victoria Azarenka, the Australian Open champion, with Maria Sharapova, the 2004 Wimbledon winner, named the third seed.

Venus Williams pulls out

Meanwhile, five-time singles champion Venus Williams has pulled out of Wimbledon because of a back injury.

The 33 year old struggled with the problem during the clay-court season and has not played since withdrawing from the doubles at Roland Garros with sister Serena.

Williams wrote on her Facebook page: "Unfortunately, I will not be able to participate in Wimbledon this year.

"I am extremely disappointed as I have always loved The Championships, but I need to take time to let my back heal.

"I look forward to returning to the courts as soon as possible, with my goal being to return to Mylan World Team Tennis on July 8th in Washington DC.

"Many thanks to my fans for the love and support and I will be seeing you very soon back on the courts."

Williams has become increasingly prone to injury as well as battling the auto-immune disease Sjogren's Syndrome.

She had been having a decent season until her back problems, reaching two semi-finals on the WTA Tour and climbing back up to 34 in the rankings.

Williams had never missed Wimbledon since her debut in 1997 and was the singles champion at the All England Club in 2000, 2001, 2005, 2007 and 2008.

She suffered her first opening-round defeat last year since 1997 to Elena Vesnina but won the doubles title for a fifth time with Serena.

sports@thenational.ae

twitter Follow us @SprtNationalUAE

Back to the top

More articles


Editor's Picks

 Glenn Maxwell's knock that followed ensured Brendon McCullum's knock went in vain after his explosive half-century took Chennai Super Kings past the 200-mark. Ravindranath K / The National

All is well with Punjab as Maxwell and Miller seal win against Chennai

The Australian missed out on a century but his 95 runs, along with Miller's unbeaten half-century, ensured Kings XI scaled a mighty peak of a target in a hot first game of Abu Dhabi's double-header.

 Sunderland manager Gus Poyet protests during the Premier League match against Crystal Palace at The Stadium of Light in Sunderland, northeast England, on March 15, 2014. Ian MacNicol / AFP

Sunderland going out of Premier League with a grumble

Northeast club have underwhelmed during seven-year stay in the top flight

 Hamburg players leave the field after the match against Borussia Moenchengladbach on March 30, 2014. AFP

Hamburg the dinosaur’s time may be up in Bundesliga

Ever-present for 51 years in the German top-flight, Hamburg face the prospect of relegation, writes Ian Hawkey.

 At 105 kg, Gabrielle Garcia has dominated the world circuit and loves many things about being in Abu Dhabi. Ravindranath K / The National

Garcia seeks fresh challenge in MMA after her jiu-jitsu domination

Brazilian prides being a lioness in the sport but feels she can shed 25kg weight to pursue her MMA debut aspirations.

 England's Jonathan Trott hits out during the ICC Champions Trophy semi final match against South Africa at The Oval cricket ground, London June 19, 2013. REUTERS/Philip Brown

England’s Jonathan Trott sidelined with stress-related illness again

Jonathan Trott is to take a second break from professional cricket because of his stress-related illness as England and Wales Cricket Board and Warwickshire confirmed he will stop playing with immediate effect.

 Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho looks on during the Premier League match between Swansea City and Chelsea at the Liberty Stadium on April 13, 2014 in Swansea, Wales. Chris Brunskill/Getty Images

‘That’s why we are a top club’ says Chelsea goalkeeper Petr Cech

Jose Mourinho’s men will temporarily claim the Premier League top spot if they beat Sunderland, leaving them in control of their own destiny in the title race ahead of a crucial trip to face Liverpool at Anfield on April 27.

Events

To add your event to The National listings, click here

Get the most from The National