Rafael Nadal qualified this Monday for the round of 16 of the tennis tournament in Indian Wells after defeating the British Daniel Evans by 7-5 and 6-3, in one hour and 42 minutes.
The Spanish tennis player, who thus extended his exceptional winning streak in 2022 (17-0), will be measured in the next round the winner of the cross between the American Reilly Opelka and the canadian Denis Shapovalov.
After his epic debut on Saturday in Indian Wells against American Sebastian Korda, whom he came back from 2-5 down in the third set to end up winning 6-2, 1-6, 7-6(3), Nadal had This Monday a somewhat simpler match, although not without difficulties.
Nadal started the match with some doubts, especially with his serve, and Evans, who is ranked number 29 in the ATP ranking, took advantage of it to break his serve and go 1-2.
The Briton was very aggressive and successful at the net, but Nadal began to warm up little by little, achieved his first break and then consolidated it on serve to tie the match: 4-4.
Evans did not fall apart and even had a break ball with 5-5 that finally did not materialize, an error that cost him expensive since Nadal, with solvency, ended up taking the first and long set (57 minutes) after an inopportune double fault of his rival.
The wind was now blowing in Nadal’s favor, who started the second set by breaking Evans’ first serve and reached a comfortable 3-0 lead.
The game, played at noon and under the harsh sun of the Californian desert, was getting uphill for Evans, who also spoiled two “break” balls with 3-1 that would have re-engaged him in the match.
Facing that, Nadal took out his most solid version and put the direct to certify their passage to the second round.
Fourth in the world rankings, Nadal has started the year at full throttle thanks to his three titles at the Australian Open, Melbourne and Acapulco.
In Nadal’s showcase there are three Indian Wells titles (2007, 2009, 2013), a tournament that is considered by many to be “the fifth Grand Slam” due to its importance on the circuit.
On the way to his fourth championship in the Californian desert, the name of the Russian no longer appears Daniel Medvedevnumber 1 in the ATP ranking and that this Monday morning he stumbled in a surprising way against the Frenchman Gael Monfils (4-6, 6-3 and 6-1).
With this result, Medvedev will lose the world number 1 next week in favor of Serbian Novak Djokovic, who is not in Indian Wells and will not play in Miami either, for not being vaccinated against the coronavirus.
Monfils, Medvedev’s executioner, will face the Spanish in the round of 16 Carlos Alcaraz, who authoritatively defeated his compatriot Roberto Bautista 6-2, 6-0 on Monday.