Rafael Nadal makes promising comeback in Fast4 exhibition

Australian Open officials and tennis fans worldwide are breathing a little easier after Rafael Nadal finally completed a match seemingly unscathed.

After withdrawing from last week's Brisbane International with a thigh strain, Nadal survived two sets of Fast4 action, plus a mini-tiebreaker, against Nick Kyrgios in Sydney on Monday night.

The 17-times grand slam champion lost 4-0 3-4 5-3 and was on court for barely an hour, but was nevertheless chuffed after a wretched four months with injury.

After retiring midway through his US Open semi-final with a knee issue, Nadal called an end to his season later in September, then lost his world No.1 ranking after undergoing ankle surgery in November.

He succumbed to Kevin Anderson in a post-Christmas exhibition event in Abu Dhabi before pulling out of his third-place play-off match for precautionary reasons.

The injury-plagued Spanish superstar then disappointed fans in Brisbane with his late scratching with a thigh strain, but promised to be "100 per cent" for the season's first grand slam starting in Melbourne next Monday.

Nadal moved freely throughout his quickfire workout against Kyrgios and offered no complaints, even after being on the end of a rare bagel in the first set.

"The first set was quick. That's how it works, this Fast4, and especially playing an unbelievable talent, a player like Nick," said the world No.2.

"(But) I was there. I need to (find) a little bit more rhythm.

"I think it was a good start for me, a good comeback to the action in front of a fantastic crowd here in Sydney.

"I really enjoyed it a lot, playing tonight here. I'm happy to be back on court and then happy that I'm healthy again."

Kyrgios, who was also keen for some game time after his second round loss at the Brisbane International to start his season, was pleased with the workout and the chance to get some court time with Nadal.

"He's a great champion. It's good to have him back, good to have him healthy and I'd love to see him do well at the Australian Open," Kyrgios said.

"It's (Fast4) just a lot of fun even though 85 per cent of the place is going for Rafa, that's fine."