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London 2012: Rafael Nadal Drops Out of London Olympics

Rafael Nadal U.S. Open 2010 Men's Champion - P 2011
Stan Honda/Getty Images

UPDATED: The tennis champ pulls out of the 2012 games, explaining he's "not in condition" to vie for a medal.

Tennis champ Rafael Nadal has dropped out of the London Olympics because of a yet-to-be-revealed fitness setback.

"I am not in condition to compete in the London Olympics and therefore will not travel as planned with the Spanish delegation to take part in the games," he said Thursday in a statement, via The Associated Press.

Nadal was slated to carry the flag for Spain during the July 27 opening ceremony.

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He called this "one of the saddest days of my career as one of my biggest ambitions, that of being Spain's flag bearer in the opening ceremony of the games in London, cannot be. You can imagine how difficult it was to take this decision."

His absence leaves one less heavyweight on the tennis courts, which will likely be dominated by this year's Wimbledon winner, Roger Federer, and Novak Djokovic, who's gained swift momentum in the past year.

Nadal scored a gold medal during 2008's Beijing games and has not hit the courts since losing his Wimbledon bid in a match against Lukas Rosol, who was ranked 100th in the competition.

Earlier this month, he dropped out of a match in Madrid because of tendon problems plaguing his left knee, the AP said, noting his history of knee issues.