Rafael Nadal Withdraws From London Olympics

Whenever an athlete gets a chance to represent their home country, it's likely said athlete will be champing at the bit to make sure that they take advantage of that opportunity. But when it comes to your health, sometimes you simply can't give your best performance.

Such is the case with professional tennis player Rafael Nadal, who withdrew from the 2012 Olympic Games because of ongoing tendinitis in his knees.

Nadal was looking forward to defending his gold medal he won in the 2008 games in Bejing for his homeland Spain, but simply can't get healthy enough in time for the start of the games. Obviously he is saddened by the news, but knows there are other excellent tennis players who will now get a golden opportunity for their home country.

"[This is] one of the saddest days of my career as one of my biggest ambitions, that of being Spain's flag-bearer in the opening ceremony of the Games in London, cannot be."

"I do not find myself in a condition to compete," he said, adding: "I have to think about my companions. I can't be selfish, and I have to think of what's best for Spanish sport, especially tennis and Spanish players, and give fellow sportsmen with better preparation the chance to compete."

The All England Club, home of the annual Championships Wimbledon, will play host for the tennis matches at this year's Olympics, the site of two of Nadal's grand slam victories in 2008 and 2010.

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