ATP

Nadal cruises past teen Blanch to tee up De Minaur rematch in Madrid

By Sports Desk April 25, 2024

Darwin Blanch presented little challenge for Rafael Nadal, who dropped just one game in a convincing 6-1 6-0 triumph at the Madrid Open.

Nadal is feeling his way back to fitness, but 16-year-old qualifier Blanch offered little resistance to the 22-time major champion on Thursday.

Making his farewell appearance at the Madrid Open, where he has won five titles, Nadal needed just 64 minutes to progress to round two.

"I think today I played against an opponent with a great future in front [of him], but today, still making mistakes," said Nadal.

"I just tried to be there, be solid all the time without taking a lot of risks. It worked well. I'm happy to be through and I wish him all the very best for the future."

Nadal's reward is a rematch with Alex de Minaur, who he lost to last week in Barcelona.

Data Debrief

This game saw the largest age gap (21 years, 117 days) between two opponents in the history of ATP Masters 1000 events.

Nadal has now registered 57 wins at the Madrid Open, which is 20 clear of any other player. 

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