Rafael Nadal defeated Sergiy Stakhovsky 7-6 (7/4), 6-3 at the ATP Montreal Masters on Wednesday.
The Spanish professional tennis player made a great start to the summer hard-court campaign after the second round exit from the Wimbledon 2015. Two-time Wimbledon champion was outplayed by Germany’s world number 102 Dustin Brown. Nadal has failed to reach the quarterfinals on his past four visits to Wimbledon.
It was another day of weather trouble in Montreal. The players had to wait for two hours before their encounter at the Uniprix stadium could begin after a morning rain shower. Once the stage was set, Nadal was down to business and made the most of the opening contest on the clay court.
The 29-year-old won the first set in a tiebreaker and swept the second to reach the third round of the tournament. Nadal fired four aces and converted on all three break opportunities. In the next round, Nadal will face Russia’s Mikhail Youzhny, who beat ninth seed Gilles Simon of France 6-1, 6-4.
Nadal currently ranked world number nine is widely regarded as the greatest clay court player in history. He has been titled “The King of Clay” in the sport. Moreover, he has won 14 Grand slam singles titles, a record 27 titles ATP World Tour Masters 1000 and 16 ATP World Tour 500 tournaments.
At the post-match press conference, Nadal said: “I think it was a good match. Only one bad game in the whole match at 5-4 with my serve in the first set. The rest was a positive match I think.”
The conditions were not easy today. A lot of wind (against) a player who don’t want to play a lot of points from the baseline, so I tried the points shorter, going to the net, playing with slice. It was not an easy opponent to start”, he added.
The Spaniard is playing in Canada for the first time since winning his third title here in 2013. IMAGE/atpworldtour