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Is Rafael Nadal playing in the 2023 French Open?

Last year’s champ won’t get a chance to defend his title.

Rafael Nadal of Spain speaks during a press conference to announce that he will not play the French Open 2023 at Rafa Nadal Academy on May 18, 2023 in Manacor, Spain. Photo by Cristian Trujillo/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images

The king of clay won’t defend his title at this year’s French Open, as Rafael Nadal announced last week that he won’t be able to compete in this year’s tournament due to a series of core injuries.

Nadal, a 14-time French Open men’s singles champion who has a record of 112-3 at Roland Garros, said that he’ll be going on an extended break away from tennis in an attempt to play next season. He said that next season will “probably” be his last year on the professional tour. In March, he fell out of the top 10 for the first time in 18 years.

Nadal hasn’t played since sustaining lower abdomen and right leg injuries at the Australian Open in January.

Last year, Nadal cruised to the title, defeating upstart Casper Rudd 6-3 6-3 6-0 to take home his 14th title. This will be the first time he’s missed the French Open since 2005.

With Nadal out, Spaniard Carlos Alcaraz is the favorite at +150, while Novak Djokovic has the second-best odds at +225. Holger Rune is third at +750.