Published: Sat, November 09, 2019
Sport | By Kayla Schwartz

Nadal anticipates lining up at ATP Finals

Nadal anticipates lining up at ATP Finals

Italian Matteo Berrettini, 23, is the third player making his debut and will have the chance to make an immediate impact when he takes on five-time tournament champion Novak Djokovic when play begins in Bjorn Borg group on Sunday. At "33 and a half" he admits he is "old to play tennis but young as a human", and knows that winning the title for the first time will be a huge task, not least because of the youngsters.

"Competition is very important and it's quite interesting to see so many varieties".

Nadal, who has never won the ATP Finals, dethroned his old rival from the top of the rankings this week and will be hoping to seal the year-end spot despite injury doubts ahead of the tournament, which starts on Sunday.

"There could be a distinction between that and in actuality being a national hero in your nation already and being a high 10 participant within the area in tennis, which is irritating to cease".

He has often struggled with injuries towards the end of the season - missing the ATP Finals previous year through injury and pulling out after just one match in 2017. "Sascha (Zverev)'s win last year was definitely a bit of a catalyst for the rest of the group who have qualified this year". "So I think the sport is in good hands".

The Spaniard had been unable to serve because of the injury but said: 'I started yesterday, very slow. They show good values.

The world No 2 has enjoyed real success in indoor events and picked up a fifth Paris Masters crown last weekend.

All four of the youngsters earned their places in London.

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The ATP Finals, featuring the year's best eight players, is contested in a round-robin format with the best four players and doubles teams reaching the knockout semi-finals stage.

Federer defended his decision to pull out of January's ATP Cup - where he had been due to face Andy Murray - for family reasons and revealed he will not play a tournament between here and the Australian Open, although he does have a number of exhibitions lined up.

Nadal came to London as current world No. 1 but needs to win more matches for ending this season in the top position, as Serbian Djokovic is only 640 points behind him.

When Federer's career tally of 103 titles was mentioned on the boat, Berrettini and Thiem looked at each other and just laughed.

"We treasure every other's games", he added.

Zverev acknowledged that Federer, Nadal and Djokovic gentle deserved their web page on the head of the sport.

The 21-year-old, the first Greek player to break into the top five of the ATP rankings, has won two ATP Tour titles in 2019.

"We are the ones now but there are others playing great tennis and there will be a very strong group of guys".

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