You won’t see tennis star, Rafael Nadal on the court any time soon. The world’s number 3 ranked tennis player withdrew from the remaining tournaments of 2014 after doctors discovered he was playing through appendicitis throughout the month of October. So on Monday, while the ATP World Tour Finals draw was being made in London; Nadal was undergoing an appendectomy in Spain.

Nadal first noticed that something was wrong during the Shanghai Masters tournament last month. Nadal felt a terrible pain his abdomen during the early stages of the tournament and after a trip to the hospital on an off day, discovered the appendicitis. Rather than undergo the surgery then, Nadal opted to take antibiotics and play through the tournament.

“I am not going to go for surgery. That’s great news for me today. But obviously I am not in my best condition,” Nadal told the media at the time.

Nadal however, was not able to make it through the tournament and lost to Feliciano Lopez in the second round. After returning to Barcelona and meeting with his own personal doctors, Nadal opted to undergo the surgery known as a laparoscopic appendectomy. Before going into the operating room, Nadal posted a before picture to his 15 million fans on Facebook:

Rafael Nadal Pre-Surgery Rafael Nadal poses with a doctor in Barcelona before entering into surgery for appendicitis. Facebook, Rafa Nadal

“Thanks for all your support! On my way to the operation room for a small surgery.” Nadal wrote on the post in both Spanish and English.

One thing for sure, is that Nadal downplayed the procedure. An appendectomy is not a “small surgery” by any means, and if for some unforeseen reason his appendix burst, it could be fatal.

After the surgery was completed, and a spokesman for Nadal told the media that the procedure was successful, but that Nadal would have to remain in the hospital for the next 48 hours to recuperate, Nadal posted a post-surgery picture on his facebook:

Rafael Nadal post surgery Rafael Nadal poses with friends after undergoing a successful appendectomy in Barcelona, Spain. Facebook, Rafa Nadal

“Everything went great. Thank you very much for your support. Big hug!” he wrote.

Nadal’s 2014 tennis season is now over, but he plans to begin training again at the end of November in order to open the season in 2015 at the Australian Open. The 2015 ATP season begins in two months time. At which time, Nadal will look to add to his 14 Grand Slam championships