Davis Cup | Spain reach World Group Stage as Nadal-Lopez get past Paes-Myneni

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Davis Cup | Spain reach World Group Stage as Nadal-Lopez get past Paes-Myneni

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SportsCafe Desk

09/18/2016

Rafael Nadal paired up with his Olympics gold medal-winning teammate Marc Lopez to beat the Indian pair of Leander Paes and Saketh Myneni 6-4, 6-7, 4-6, 4-6 to give Spain an unassailable 3-0 lead in their Davis Cup World Group play-off tie on Saturday. Nadal also praised Paes after the match.

It was a treat for the fans who gathered at the R.K. Khanna Stadium on Saturday night, as Rafael Nadal, finally, opted to make an appearance on the court, after opting out of his singles match on Friday due to an injury. The fans also got to witness Indian tennis legend Leander Paes in action.

The Spanish pair raced to a 4-1 lead in the first set as Paes and Myneni, who were playing together for the first time, took time to settle down. However, the Indian pair showed tremendous fight and, almost miraculously, won five games in a row to win the first set 6-4.

The second set went to a tie-break, which was won by Nadal and Lopez to tie the match at 1-1. Nadal began to pull out his big strokes, and it proved too much for Paes and Myneni to handle at times, and, eventually, the Spanish pair won the last two sets with identical scorelines of 6-4. The win gave Spain an unassailable 3-0 lead in the tie and took them back to the World Group stage of the Davis Cup.

However, Nadal heaped a lot of praise on Paes after the match. He said, “Leander Paes is one of the best players in the history of doubles. For us it was important to get back to the World Group.

“It was a great match. Many thanks to all the fans.”

Paes replied in kind and termed the Spanish pair as a ‘champion side’.

“They are a champion side. They fought for every point,” said Paes, reported the Hindu.

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