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Welcome to Rafael Nadal Court!

Tennis

BARCELONA – Resurgent Spanish great Rafael Nadal will have the rare privilege of playing on a court named after him when he meets Brazilian Rogerio Dutra Silva in the last-32 of the Barcelona Open on Wednesday.

Dutra Silva comfortably beat Argentina’s Renzo Olivo 6-1 6-1 on Tuesday to set up a clash with the Spanish great on the Rafael Nadal Court, the centre court at the Real Club de Tenis, which was renamed in his honour last week.

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Rafael Nadal addresses a press conference ahead of his first match at the Barcelona Open. Photo: Manu Fernandez, APAndy Murray trudges off court after losing in the third round of the Monte Carlo Masters. Photo: Sebastien Nogier, EPAKevin Anderson hits a forehand during his victory over David Ferrer at the Barcelona Open on Tuesday. Photo: Toni Albir, EPA

The 14-time Grand Slam champion Nadal is the main attraction at the tournament, fresh from winning the Monte Carlo Masters for a record 10th time on Sunday.

World No 1 Andy Murray’s late entry has also caused a stir, and the Briton will meet Bernard Tomic on Wednesday in the third round after the Australian saw off German Dustin Brown in three sets.

Murray spent two years training at the Academia Sanchez-Casal in Barcelona, where he too has a court named after him.

The Scot accepted a late wildcard for the tournament after being eliminated in the third round at Monte Carlo.

Tournament organisers’ hopes of Nadal meeting fellow Spaniard David Ferrer in the last-16 were ended on Tuesday when South African Kevin Anderson knocked out the popular 35-year-old 6-3 6-4 in straight sets.

Kevin Anderson hits a forehand during his victory over David Ferrer at the Barcelona Open on Tuesday. Photo: Toni Albir, EPA


Austria’s Dominic Thiem beat British No 2 Kyle Edmund 6-1 6-4 on Tuesday to make it into the last-16, and on Thursday will meet another Briton in Dan Evans, who beat Germany’s Mischa Zverev 6-4 6-4.

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