Tennis: World No. 1 Rafa Nadal pulls out of Paris Masters quarter-final, participation at ATP World Tour Finals in London in doubt

Rafael Nadal reacts during his round of 16 match against Uruguay's Pablo Cuevas at the Rolex Paris Masters tennis tournament in Paris, France on Nov 2, 2017.
Rafael Nadal reacts during his round of 16 match against Uruguay's Pablo Cuevas at the Rolex Paris Masters tennis tournament in Paris, France on Nov 2, 2017. PHOTO: EPA-EFE

Paris (AFP) - Rafael Nadal pulled out of his Paris Masters quarter-final against  77th-ranked Serb Filip Krajinovic on Friday (Oct 3) with a knee injury, forfeiting the chance to grab a rare Masters title which has eluded him thus far.

The Spaniard had earlier insisted he would be ready to play at the World Tour Finals in London later this month, despite having his knee strapped during his Paris Masters last-16 win over Pablo Cuevas on Thursday (Nov 2), but the withdrawal leaves his participation at the season-ending tournament in doubt.

The world No. 1 had called the trainer to tape his right knee after losing the second set in his 6-3, 6-7 (5-7), 6-3 victory over Uruguayan Cuevas.

Nadal was plagued by knee problems in 2015 and 2016, before roaring back into form this season by winning the French and US Open titles.

"Well, of course, (I'm) 100 per cent okay," the Spaniard told a press conference on Thursday.

"Of course, I going to be playing in London normally, if nothing happens. It depends (on the next) one week and a half. Anything can happen in one week and a half.

"But if nothing strange happens, then I'm going to be there, of course."

The 16-time Grand Slam champion had been bidding for a record 31st Masters title at Bercy, having secured the year-end No. 1 ranking on Wednesday (Nov 1).

"It's not the moment to talk much about the knee," the 31-year-old added.

"It's more the moment about talking about the quarter-finals. I won an important match for me.

"Tomorrow (is) another chance against a player that's playing very well.