Rafael Nadal is revving up his competitive engine for his long-awaited return to red clay.
The reigning US Open and Roland Garros champion, who will skip the Flushing Meadows major to focus on the abbreviated clay season, has been training on dirt with some students at the Rafa Nadal Academy in his native Mallorca.
Fellow Mallorcan Jaume Munar andyoung players from the Academy, including Dani Rincón (Spain), Abdullah Shelbay (Jordan), Miko Eala (Philippines) and Rafael Giotis (Germany) have all practiced with the 19-time Grand Slam champion.
Nadal, who defeated Novak Djokovic to capture his ninth Rome title last year, will return for the Internazionali BNL d’Italia, set for September 14th-21st in preparation for defending his Roland Garros championship.
Photo credit: Barcelona Open BancSabadell – Trofeo Conde de Godo