Rafael Nadal is set to make his return from injury in Spain’s Davis Cup quarter-final against Germany next month.
The 31-year-old has not played a match since retiring during the fifth set of his quarter-final against Marin Cilic at the Australian Open in January with a hip muscle injury.
Nadal had been scheduled to play in a tournament in Acapulco last month but pulled out ahead of his first-round match and subsequently withdrew from the Masters events in Indian Wells and Miami.
The clash between Spain and Germany will take place on Nadal’s favoured clay at the Plaza de Toros in Valencia from April 6-8.
Assuming he is fit enough to play in the tie, Nadal will make his first Davis Cup appearance since a World Group play-off victory over India in 2016, when he only featured in the doubles rubber.
Speaking about his number one player, Spain captain Sergi Bruguera said on the Spanish Federation website: “Rafa is getting better and training more. There is still a week and a half to start the matches and there is time.”
Nadal will return to action as world number one following Roger Federer’s second-round loss to Thanasi Kokkinakis in Miami but will need to match his superb results during the clay season from 2017 if he is to hang on to top spot.
He is joined in the Spain team by Roberto Bautista Agut, Pablo Carreno Busta, Feliciano Lopez and David Ferrer.