Rafael Nadal announces end to 2021 season through injury
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Rafael Nadal’s coaching advice helped Roger Federer beat Nick Kyrgios at the 2019 Laver Cup. With the score tied 3-3 between team Europe and team World, the 20-time Grand Slam champion was locked in a tight battle with the Australian.
Federer was trailing 6-7, 4-5 and was due to serve to stay in the match.
During changeovers at the Laver Cup, players are allowed to strategise with their cpatain and teammates, and rival and good friend Nadal stepped up to give some advice to the Swiss.
The Spaniard, who was watching intently from the sidelines, told Federer: ”After five shots [in the rally], you are winning more [points] than him.
“I know it’s difficult because he reads the ball so well… Wait for the right one and then attack because he’s not missing.”
It worked a treat as Federer comfortably held serve for 5-5, before securing a break of serve to push the second set score to 6-5.
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At the next changeover, Nadal urged his teammate to use more spin on his serve and hit higher looping balls to disrupt the rhythm of the big serving Kyrgios.
Once again Nadal’s advice proved to be sound as Federer produced a comfortable service hold to win the set 7-5 and force a match tie-break.
The nine-time Wimbledon champion saved his best tennis for the crucial moments and powered to a 10-4 win in the tie break which sealed the match for his team.
Europe went on to win the event 13-11 and retain the Laver Cup.
This year’s event will take place in Boston this weekend, with Team World looking to win the Laver Cup for the very first time.
Tennis’ ‘Big Three’ of Federer, Nadal and Novak Djokovic will not feature for Team Europe this year, but US Open champion Daniil Medvedev will be taking part, as well as Matteo Berrettini, Sascha Zverev, Stefanos Tsitsipas, Andrey Rublev and Casper Ruud.
Team World will be represented by Denis Shapovalov, Felix Auger-Aliassime, Diego Schwartzman, Reilly Opelka, John Isner and Nick Kyrgios.
Bjorn Borg will once again captain Team Europe, while Team World will be led by John McEnroe.
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The former’s vice captain will be compatriot Thomas Enqvist, while the latter will be assisted by younger brother Patrick McEnroe.
The upcoming edition of the Laver Cup was originally scheduled for September 2020, but postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic to avoid overlapping with the 2020 French Open, which was rescheduled for 20 September to 4 October last year.
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