Rafael Nadal
Rafael Nadal won the Gold medal at the 2008 Beijing Olympics Getty

Tennis ace Rafael Nadal does not understand why his fellow tennis players are opting out of the upcoming 2016 Rio Olympics as he feels it is the most "important" event in the world of sport. Players such as American John Isner, Australian Bernard Tomic, Austrian Dominic Thiem and Spaniard Feliciano Lopez have chosen to skip the games.

"The experience of competing in an Olympic games is completely different than any other event. The Olympics is the most important event in the world of sport. If you don't want to be in the most important event in the world of sport, then it is difficult to understand what's the motivation for the rest of the things," Nadal was quoted as saying.

The world number five missed the 2012 Olympics due to a knee injury, which left him disappointed, as he had won the gold medal at the Beijing Olympics in 2008.

"Everybody's free to do whatever but I know how tough it was for me when I had to miss the 2012 Olympics in London. I cannot understand people who don't want to go to Olympics, it's something that is not every year. It's an event that you can compete only once, twice or maybe three times in your career, if you are lucky. So you don't want to miss that."

The upcoming Olympic Games in Rio has been plagued with problems relating to finance, infrastructure and health. The outbreak of the Zika virus is the biggest of them all as a number of athletes have pulled out of the event, because of it. The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared it "a public health emergency of International concern" with one doctor writing to the Harvard Public Health Review asking authorities to shift the games out of Rio de Janeiro.

The Summer Games is scheduled to start on 5 August and will conclude on 21 August.