Rafael Nadal has booked his place in the second round of the Rio Olympics courtesy of a straight-sets victory over Federico Delbonis this evening.
He needed 86 minutes to see off his Argentine opponent 6-2, 6-1. It was Rafa’s his first victory since the French Open in May, when a wrist injury disrupted his season.
After the match, Rafa said:
I’m very happy. It’s important for me to play well again and it was an unbelievable start. I played well mentally with strong concentration all match. (via ATP World Tour)
On making a winning return to tennis after two months out:
It was a very special moment for me. It was a great feeling to be back on the court, especially in an Olympic Games. It’s a different feeling to another competition so I enjoy it a lot – a match with a great crowd and I’m just happy with the way I started the competition. Was a great feeling. (via ITF)
On his still-fragile wrist:
If there was not Olympic Games here I would not be competing. The wrist need a little more time to be 100% recovered. It’s only one chance every four years and is something unforgettable. I missed London so I didn’t want to miss this one. I am enjoying a lot, I am happy, I am doing the best thing I can do every single moment to be ready for the action and today was a great feeling on court.
Rafa should return to begin his doubles campaign alongside Marc Lopez later today.