London – Spain's Rafael Nadal got in a light practice session here Thursday ahead of his Wimbledon semifinal match against Scotland's Andy Murray, avoiding placing too much strain on the left foot he injured earlier this week.
The world No. 1 said after defeating American Mardy Fish in Wednesday's quarterfinals that he used an anesthetic during that match to numb the pain in the foot, which he tweaked during his fourth-round match Monday against Argentina's Juan Martin del Potro.
Prior to the match with Fish, Nadal had undergone an MRI scan that showed no serious injury.
Nadal showed no signs of discomfort while working on his return of serve and backhand during the session, joking around with his practice partner - a Welsh junior player - and later signing autographs for fans.
Much is at stake as the tournament winds to a close, with Nadal eyeing his third Wimbledon trophy and 11th Grand Slam title and Murray just two matches away from becoming the first British man since 1936 to win tennis' most prestigious tournament.
Meanwhile, Nadal's uncle and coach predicted that Murray will probably win Wimbledon this year if he can win Friday's semifinal match.
"If Murray wins tomorrow, I think he'll win the tournament. If Rafa wins (in the semifinals), I don't know what will happen," Toni Nadal told reporters after the practice session at the All England Club.
The winner of the Nadal-Murray match will take on either Serbia's Novak Djokovic or France's Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in Sunday's final. Djokovic will wrest the No. 1 ranking away from Nadal if he wins Friday's first semifinal.
Referring to his nephew's heel injury, Toni Nadal said the problem has been overcome.
"Yesterday we used anesthetics, but nothing today. He trained normally. We're used to dealing with injuries so it's not a problem for us. The problem tomorrow is Murray, not the injury."
"When you play against Murray, nothing's easy. Up to now, Rafa has played well but that won't be enough against Murray," Nadal's coach said of the fourth-ranked Scotsman, who has reached three Grand Slam finals in his career but lost each time in straight sets.