After for the most part of disappointing attendances so far in the new format in the enormous 12,500-seat stadium, the world number one cruised to victory with 6-3 7-6(7) to prevail upon Russia’s Karen Khachanov.
While the response to Nadal’s win seemed like Spain had won the old trophy for a 6th time it in reality he just levelled the Group B tie at 1-1. The win came just before 2 a.m.when veteran pair Marcel Granollers and Feliciano Lopez beat Andrey Rublev and Khachanov 6-4 7-6 to secure a 2-1 wins.
With Russia have defeated defending champions Croatia 3-0 on Monday there was some uneasiness on Spain seat when Rublev fought back to beat Wimbledon semi-finalist Roberto Bautista Agut 3 6-3 7-6(0) and put them ahead. That left the 33-year-old Nadal with no scope for blunders against the world number 17 Khachanov.
Be that as it may, if at any point there is a man for a crisis it is Nadal. He had won his last 24 Davis Cup singles titles since losing on his debut in 2004 and was not going to stop now — not on home soil with his nation relying upon him.
Khachanov extended him to breaking point, particularly in the 2nd set, yet the 19 times Grand Slam champion fended off a set point before getting victory. A short time later he said the new format, with ties comprising of 3 titles instead of the regular 5, made things risky.
Spain can arrive at the quarter-finals on Wednesday by beating Croatia, who removed coach Zeljko Krajan 2 days before their opening tie and will be without Marin Cilic. Canada’s tennis resurgence proceeded as they turned into the first country through to the last eight in the wake of beating the United States without precedent for 16. Vasek Pospisil, positioned 150th on the world rankings, edged teenager Reilly Opelka 7-6 (5) 7-6 (7) before Denis Shapovalov beat Taylor Fritz. The Canadians’ second 2-1 wins, having beaten Italy on Monday, fixed top spot in Group F.
Canada could confront Australia in the last eight after Nick Kyrgios came back from a two-month lay-off to put his group on their way to a 3-0 win over Colombia in Group D.