IPTL: Nadal outlasts Federer in classic thriller
(Philstar.com) - December 12, 2015 - 10:23pm

MANILA, Philippines -- In what was the most anticipated match in the Coca-Cola International Premier Tennis League Season 2, the most intense rivalry in tennis unravel right in front of a big Delhi crowd, as Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer faced off in the final match of the third leg.

Matching each other point for point, the set went down the wire, with Nadal coming out on top for the home team and the defending champion Indian Aces, capping off a perfect 30 as the league wrapped up its Delhi schedule, heading off to Dubai next.

“I’m happy to play here against Roger and the crowd gave us a lot of love. I played here one day before, so in a sense I had an advantage, but playing Roger is always exciting,” Nadal said. 

The loss dampened Federer and the Slammers, who failed to win a single set. Later, Federer dismissed the notion that IPTL is just a glorified exhibition matches.

"To me this is serious tennis with a fun aspect of having a team high five you continuously. Call it an exhibition or not, it’s a fun concept. The legends deserve a shout out as well… they’re playing at such a good level even now,” Federer said. 

Federer will play in Dubai and one more in Singapore hoping to propel the Slammers on top. They currently trail the league leading Aces (57.7%) with 51.0 winning percentage. 

“I had a slow start and Rafa already played a match here. The season’s just beginning, so I’m bound to be a bit rusty. Considering those circumstances, I played pretty well. Overall it was a great experience," Federer added. 

Sania Mirza and Rohan Bopanna opened the match with an inspire effort in front of their countrymen winning the mixed doubles set,  6-4, against Kristina Mladenovic and Daniel Nestor. Agnieszka Radwanska backed up the success of the opening set for her team, by winning solidly against Mladenovic, closing it off 6-1 in twenty short minutes

Vintage tennis was at its best when Fabrice Santoro played against Goran Ivanisevic of the Royals in the legend’s singles.

Slicing the ball back onto the other court, Magician Santoro was a sheer delight with each shot that he returned. The spirit of competition at its highest, ultimately Santoro won it 6-5 in the shootout, the Aces now 3 sets up

The men’s doubles saw Nadal and Bopanna pair up against Marin Cilic and Federer of the Royals to a deafening roar from the more than 13,000-strong audience eager to see their idols live in person.

The ace pairing of Nadal-Bopanna proved to be far superior, winning the set 6-4 against the Royals.

With the match already in the bag, the home fans had much to cheer about when Nadal and Federer, two of the greatest players in this generation, played in a classic ending to a three-day of world-class tennis action in India. 

 

 

ACIRC AGNIESZKA RADWANSKA COCA-COLA INTERNATIONAL PREMIER TENNIS LEAGUE SEASON DUBAI FABRICE SANTORO FEDERER FEDERER AND THE SLAMMERS FEDERER OF THE ROYALS GORAN IVANISEVIC OF THE ROYALS INDIAN ACES NBSP
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