Spain are set to tour India from the 16th to the 18th of September, and the team have now officially announced that Rafael Nadal will be part of the squad that tours New Delhi next week.
Alongside Nadal will be David Ferrer, Feliciano Lopez and Marc Lopez; the clay-court specialists will be led by 80s ace Conchita Martinez. Marc Lopez and Nadal together won gold at in the men’s doubles at Rio 2016, while Feliciano Lopez is a four-time Davis Cup winner.
Feliciano, like Marc, is primarily a doubles specialist, and has three doubles titles in addition to his French Open men’s doubles win this year with his compatriot, who shares his surname.
Two-time US Open champion and fourth seed Nadal was ousted from the tournament in the Round of 16 by 22-year-old Frenchman Lucas Pouille, who is unseeded at Flushing Meadows; the World No. 25 took the Spaniard to five sets, with Nadal even looking in a position to beat his younger rival at one point, but Pouille held on for victory.
Ferrer, like Nadal, is more proficient in the singles, and seeded 11th at the US Open, tumbled in three sets to Juan Martin Del Potro yesterday after taking him to a tiebreak in the first. Of the five Davis Cup titles Spain have won, Ferrer has been on the team for three of those titles. Nadal has been on four Davis Cup-winning sides, three with Ferrer and one, in 2004, alongside former No. 1 Carlos Moya.
Spain are immensely successful at the Davis Cup, having won the title on five occasions – in 2000, 2004, 2008, 2009 and 2011, and been runner-up another four times – in 1965, 1967, 2003, and 2012.
Great Britain are the reigning champions at the Davis Cup, with World No. 2 and 2016 Wimbledon winner Andy Murray helping the team to their first Davis Cup title in eight decades.
India have been in competition at the Davis Cup for 95 years, but are yet to win a title. The team, which saw Saketh Myneni, Rohan Bopanna, Leander Paes and Davis Cup debutant Ramkumar Ramanathan represent the country, took a rousing 4-1 victory over Korea in Chandigarh this year, but playing Spain, one of the strongest tennis-playing nations in history, will no doubt be a different ball game.
Paes and Bopanna recently exited the US Open, while Myneni had his strongest ever Grand Slam finish this year, making the main draw at the US Open before taking 49th ranked Jiri Vesely to 5 sets.
The tie will begin on the 16th of September in New Delhi.