FORMER British No1 Tim Henman expects defending champion Rafael Nadal to win his battle against knee injury in time for Wimbledon.<br /><br />Nadal has just 11 days to recover from tendonitis in both kneecaps before he is due to begin his campaign at SW19. The problem forced him to pull out of this week’s Aegon Championships at Queen’s Club, and the Spaniard admitted on Monday his Wimbledon hopes hung in the balance.<br /><br />But Henman, four times a semi-finalist at the All England Club, believes world No1 Nadal’s safety-first approach will ensure the 23-year-old is fit enough to bid for his eighth Grand Slam. “I’m optimistic because I think he manages his knees well. There is no doubt he will do everything he can. Hopefully he will be there because if he wasn’t it would be a big loss for the tournament,” Henman told City A.M..<br /><br />“It’s disappointing that he’s not playing Queen’s but it’s definitely the right move for him if he’s struggling with his knees. As world No1 and defending champion he is going to be desperate to play Wimbledon.”<br /><br />Nadal’s morale was also hurt last month when the four-time champion suffered his first ever loss at the French Open. But Henman does not think the landmark defeat will have a major impact on his confidence. <br /><br />“When you have played the French Open four times and won it four times, any loss is going to be disappointing. But you have to look at the bigger picture – in the first six months of the year he won the Australian Open for the first time, he won three Masters series – it’s been phenomenal,” Henman added. <br /><br />“He had a surprising loss in Paris but I wouldn’t have thought he has dwelt on it too long.”<br /><br />&9679; Read the full interview with Tim Henman next week in City A.M..<br /><br />HSBC uses its sponsorships to help young people, education and community. Tim Henman is an ambassador for the HSBC Road to Wimbledon National 14 & Under Challenge. By investing in grass roots tennis, HSBC is supporting a new generation of talent. For more information please visit www.wimbledon.org/roadtowimbledon.