Rafal Nadal of Spain returns a shot to Mikhail Kukushkin of Kazakhstan during their quarter final round match at the PTT Thailand Open tennis tournament in Bangkok, Thailand Friday, Oct . 1, 2010. Nadal beat Kukushkin 6-2, 6-3 (AP Photo/Wason Wanichakorn
Wason Wanichakorn
November 18, 2014

MADRID (AP) Rafael Nadal says he will return to playing at the start of the year.

The 14-time Grand Slam champion hasn't played since having his appendix removed this month, forcing him to miss the season-ending ATP finals.

Nadal says ''I will play in Abu Dhabi in January, and after that I will play my first official tournament in Doha.''

The Abu Dhabi exhibition tournament is scheduled for Jan. 1-3. The tournament in Doha, Qatar, will be played the following week.

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