German world number three Alexander Zaverev underwent surgery on a torn ligament in his right ankle on Tuesday after being forced to retire from the semifinals of his French Open against 22-time champions Rafa Nadal last week.
Zverev was trailing 6-7 (6) 6-7 against Nadal when he rolled his ankle and he screamed in pain. The 25-year-old was fighting for his first Grand Slam title and would have become number one in the world if he had succeeded in his quest.
“Next week I’ll be number 2 in the world career-high rankings, but this morning I had surgery,” Zaverev said in a post on Instagram with a picture of him in a hospital bed.
“After further examination in Germany, we are convinced that the three lateral ligaments in my right ankle have ruptured.
“To return to the competition as soon as possible, to ensure that all the ligaments healed properly and to restore complete stability to my ankle, surgery was the best choice. My rehabilitation begins now and I will do everything to return stronger than before!”
Xavier’s brother, Misha, told the German newspaper Bild that the Wimbledon 25-year-old “out of the question” grassroots major set would be held from June 27 to July 10.
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