Spanish tennis star Rafael Nadal has pulled out of the London Olympics, the International Herald Tribune's Christopher Clarey has confirmed.
Nadal won the gold medal at the 2008 Beijing Olympics but will now not return to defend his title. The news was first reported by Steve Wilson and Rob Harris of the Associated Press.
Nadal has struggled recently, losing in the second round at Wimbledon in June. He was scheduled to carry Spain's flag at the opening ceremony.
The 26-year-old Nadal has been one of tennis's three superstars over the past few seasons. Roger Federer, the Wimbledon winner this year and once again the No. 1 player in the world, and former No. 1 Novak Djokovic are now the clear favorites in the event. Scotland's Andy Murray, who reached the Wimbledon final, also looks to be playing well heading into the Games. Murray should have the home crowd's support behind him again in London.