'Rafael Nadal has contributed to the growth of...', says ATP star

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'Rafael Nadal has contributed to the growth of...', says ATP star

Rafael Nadal's debut at the Mutua Madrid Open is upon us. According to the schedule of the Madrid tournament, the Spaniard's first match will fall on Wednesday: in the first match of the draw, he will face the winner between Kecmanovic and Bublik.

Not a random day for the winner of twenty-one Grand Slam titles: on Wednesday evening there will also be the second leg of the Champions League, which sees Manchester City and Real Madrid as protagonists. The Spanish team, as well as the tennis player's favorite team, must recover (in their home stadium) the result of the spectacular first leg, which ended 4-3 for the English.

Speaking to El Larguero, the director of the tournament, Feliciano Lopez, revealed that Nadal had asked to move the time of his opening match, also explaining the reasons, not only related to the football match. "Rafa likes to play during the day in Madrid, as the ball bounces higher, and with the Champions League semifinal he asked us not to play at the same time as the match", revealed Lopez, as reported by Punto de Break, who confessed of wanting to go see Real Madrid.

He is a choice that two other Real tennis players and fans will most likely follow: Nadal himself and Carlos Alcaraz. Although the passage to the Champions League final is still in the balance, with a goal to be recovered at the City, certainties arrive for Real Madrid on the championship front.

In the match against Espanyol, it was Rafa Nadal who kicked off the match. A match that, with the final result of 2-1, determined the victory of the Spanish Liga by the team from the capital.

Feliciano Lopez reflects on Nadal

Feliciano Lopez, tournament director at the Madrid Open, recently heaped praise on two legendary Spanish tennis players, Rafael Nadal and Manolo Santana.

Lopez referred to the 21-time Major winner as "our biggest pillar." "The tournament can be defined with two people: Manolo Santana, who convinced the mayor and the people believed in the project thanks to him, and the other is Rafa Nadal," Lopez said.

"He has been our biggest pillar in these years and has contributed to the growth of the tournament, because he fills the courts and is well loved in Madrid," he continued. "Surely in Mallorca they love him more, but here there is a dispute because they adore him."

Nadal, who will make a record 19th appearance at the Madrid Open this year, has won the tournament five times, more than any other player in history.