NADAL TO MAKE DECEMBER RETURN IN ABU DHABI
FOURTEEN-TIME Grand Slam champion Rafael Nadal (caricature) will make his return to action at the Mubadala World Tennis Championships exhibition event in Abu Dhabi at the end of December. Nadal’s 2016 season was plagued by physical problems and he cut his campaign short in October to recover fully to target a return to Grand Slam glory in 2017. “Excited to announce my first tournament back will be in Abu Dhabi at the #MubadalaWorldTennisChampionship in December,” the Spaniard posted on his Twitter account yesterday. Nadal, a three-time winner of the event, will be joined by new world number one Andy Murray, Milos Raonic, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, David Goffin and Thomas Berdych in the six-man even from December 29-31. The 37-year-old senator claimed the WBO welterweight title with a unanimous points victory over American Jessie Vargas in Las Vegas on Saturday, his first bout since April. “I went back after the fight because there is still work at the office and I’m excited to get back to work,” Pacquiao, wearing a flower garland, told reporters at the airport alongside Philippine National Police chief Ronald Dela Rosa. “So boxing is done, set aside for now, and just focus on work.” The southpaw, winner of world titles in eight different weight divisions and the first sitting senator to win a world boxing championship, has not ruled out fighting again. The former congressman, who has a 59-6-2 win-lossdraw record, said after Saturday’s bout that he would like a rematch with retired American Floyd Mayweather Junior who beat him last year.