Rafael Nadal grabbed the limelight with two wins in his IPTL debut as Indian Aces thrashed UAE Royals 30:18 at the Mall of Asia Arena in Manila. With this win, the Indian Aces have displaced Philippine Mavericks from the top of the table.
The Indian pair of Rohan Bopanna and Sania Mirza provided their team with the early momentum as they downed Kristina Mladenovic and Daniel Nestor 6-4 in the mixed doubles tie. In the women's singles tie, Samantha Stosur extended Indian Aces' lead to 12:7 with a one-sided 6-3 win over Mladenovic.
Indian Aces' coach Fabrice Santoro continued his sublime form in the tournament as he notched up a 6-3 win against former Wimbledon champion Goran Ivanisevic.
Rafael Nadal, then, made his debut in the IPTL by partnering Ivan Dodig in the men's doubles tie, and he did so in style. The Indian Aces pair made short work beating the pairing of Nestor and Tomas Berdych 6-3, before Nadal and Berdych squared off again in the men's singles.
Berdych raced to a 3-0 lead over Nadal, who looked a bit rusty, but the Spaniard, like he almost always does, fought back and won the game 6-5.
Indian Aces next face Philippine Mavericks tomorrow in a battle for the top spot – only a slender 1.8% win ratio separates the top two teams with the Aces on top at 56.2%.