Rafael Nadal eases past Guido Pella at Indian Wells [PHOTOS]

Three-time champion Rafael Nadal booked his spot in the third round of the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells with a 6-3, 6-2 win over Guido Pella.

Pella got off to a hot start, breaking Rafa in the third game of their first meeting. But our champ settled in and reeled off six of the next seven games to clinch the opener and break at the start of the second. Pella halted Rafa’s momentum by canceling out the break in the second game, but Rafa regained his lead in the fifth game and would win the last five games as he closed out victory in 81 minutes.

No. 5 seed next faces either fellow Spaniard Fernando Verdasco or Frenchman Pierre-Hugues Herbert.

Rafa is still bidding for his first hardcourt title in over three years (2014 Doha). He has played 30 hardcourt tournaments since then.

Source: BNP Paribas Open

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32 thoughts on “Rafael Nadal eases past Guido Pella at Indian Wells [PHOTOS]

  1. It’s OK Margo…I have two cats as well, which go missing when Rafa is on! They can’t understand why their human turns into a raving lunatic while watching TV!

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  2. There will be other opportunities!!!!!!! : ) It was a fun match dear Rafa and it was great to see you and Tomic play Doubles so well. Vamos sweetheart for all the great points!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! : ) : ) : ) : ) Have a nice night & enjoy all your great sportsmanship!!!!!! : ) Have a great evening & a beautiful tomorrow !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! : ) 🙂 🙂 : ) Lots of love & happiness and VAMOS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! : ) VAMOS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! : ) VAMOS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! : )

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  3. Margo

    Well Rafa, you had fun, you got some good practice in. You now can concentrate and rest for what you have ahead of you. You want that trophy and so do I.

    BEST OF LUCK vs VERDASCO

    RAFA ROCKS

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  4. YEH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! : ) Rafa & Tomic are fantastic in their Doubles coverage!!!!! : ) : ) Love the way they own the entire court and play so well together!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! : ) Brilliant speedy solid 1st SET win!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! : ) : ) : ) : ) 🙂 It is so much fun to see Tomic’s incredible instincts & talent manifested on the court, and how focused and matter of fact he is!!!!!!! : ) GO TOMIC GO!!!!!!!!!!!! : ) I always admired his ability and skills and am so glad Rafa opt to play Doubles with him!!!!!!!! : ) Rafa is impressive with his magical entire Tennis package!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! : ) : ) : ) : ) Beautiful serve and net reach and returns and speed and that fantastic strong feisty presence!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! : ) : ) : ) : ) VAMOS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! : )

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    1. Margo

      Just got back home, turned on all the electronics and was greeted by Fan love’s rambunctious cheering for Rafa. That tells me Rafa/Tomic are winning without even checking the TV. Thanks Fan love.

      YOU ROCK RAFA

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  5. AMAZING!!!!!!! Both players hitting sharp down the lines Left & Right covering corners!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! : ) WOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! : ) Very promising ….: )
    GO RAFA GO…….GO TOMIC GO…….. : ) great fun match : )

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  6. BEAUTIFUL !!!!!!!!!!!! : ) TOMIC SERVE IS SO GREAT & RAFA IS RETURNING BRILLIANTLY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! : ) : ) !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! : ) 🙂 : ) VAMOS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! : )

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  7. OLA OLA OLA & VAMOS DEAR RAFA : ) : ) : ) : ) : ) It is a beautiful day: ) Enjoy it sweetheart & have lots & lots & lots of fun playing Doubles !!! : ) Keep Tomic in line: )….. Just kidding : ) He is great and the two of you make a great team! : ) ENJOY EVERYTHING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! : ) VAMOS & LOTS OF LOVE & HAPPINESS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! : ) : ) : ) GO RAA GO!!!! : ) VAMOS!!!!!!!!!!!!! : ) VAMOS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! : ) VAMOS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! : )

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  8. Mac

    A good win for Rafa. His life will only get more difficult from here on out… Verdasco, then Federer and possibly Djokovic.

    Shocker for Andy Murray though, but then Pospisil is a very good player when he decided to bring his A game.

    Back to Rafa… hopefully Verdasco doesn’t throw many surprises our way. Get it done champ!

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    1. Margo

      Welcome back Teresa, haven’t seen you in a while.

      I thoughr about Verdasco, and the three times Fernando did beat Rafa; 2012, 2015, 2016.

      2012 was at Madrid and the slippery blue clay, about which Rafa was vociferous in his distaste for it. He went as far as saying if it was not replaced by regular clay he would be dropping that tournament. 2012 was also when he pulled out of the Olympics.

      2015 was at the Miami Open. He explained his loss by citing nerves and anxious[ness].

      2016 was at the AO. He said it was not his day.

      The Rafa of today is not the same Rafa who lost to Fernando, three times. Playing on that blue court must have freaked Rafa out so he was unable to overcome his shock on having to play on a slippery court. Fear of injury is my guess. (Other players were just as displeased but I don’t know if Rafa is the only one to say he may drop that tournament.)

      RAFA ROCKS

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    1. Teresa

      History tells us, you play well on clay, you sacrifice elsewhere. No other player in history has been able to succeed on clay and HC (and grass) as Rafa.

      A few stand alone records:
      350+ match wins on both hard and clay courts
      Won 35+ matches on clay courts and 35+ matches on hard courts in single calendar season
      Longest match winning streak combined on clay, grass and hard (32 matches), also most consecutive tournaments (5) won on same three surfaces (2008 Hamburg-Toronto).

      To put things in perspective, Rafa is one of the best hard court players in history. 16 HC titles is the 4th highest. He is one of only 4 players in the Open Era to win at least 50 AO matches.

      People are expecting Rafa to do what nobody else but Rafa has already done.

      As someone said below – everything is gravy now.

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      1. Margo

        Welcome back Teresa.

        Thanks for enumerating some of Rafa’s bona fides. I just say “his many firsts” because it would take me forever to cover everything he has accomplished. Can’t do it from memory.

        RAFA ROCKS

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  9. I have closely followed tennis since the early 70’s, and have seen all the great champions in action. Rafael Nadal is the GOAT.. Most exciting, brilliant genius I ever witnessed. Countless breathtaking championship matches. He has nothing to prove to me, and everything he does from here on out is pure gravy.

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    1. Patricia, I couldn’t agree with you more. If Rafa was never to win another tournament he is already a legend in his own lifetime. ( but of course I expect him to have many further wins before he retires)
      His game is so thrilling to watch unless he is injured but even then he will fight on. No one brings tennis alive more than he does in my opinion.
      I have often thought that some of the tennis commentators and tennis writers do not give him his full due and tend to underestimate him. I don’t know why, but perhaps they are avid Federer supporters and can’t, or don’t want , to see and appreciate the brilliance of Rafa’s game because his style is so different to Fed’s.
      Different and far more thrilling in my eyes.
      Champions will come and go but there will never be another Rafa.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I totally agree with Beverly and Patricia above. Rafa, by far is the most exciting player to watch.
        When you watch Rafa play, it is way more than a match, it’s an experience. No other player gives me such a rush even during a loss.

        It even goes beyond the phenomenol shot-making, movement, tactics, and strategy. It’s the total engagement in every single point, the fist-pumps, his exhiliration when he scores the most difficult point from a ridiculously difficult angle of the court when he reverses a break-point on his serve. And what about those miraculous lobs especially the back-handed ones where he can’t even see the court in front of him and those high jumps into the air. I also love when he is on the hunt to break the service game of his opponent. You can smell the blood in the water. I totally agree that there will never be another Rafa. I can’t say enough about this truly great champion. Just keep competing because I love watching along with all your fans around the world!

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      2. That is exactly what I have been trying to say… Rafa deserves to be the GOAT more than Roger… Other than a few more slams,Rafa has a lot more record breaking accomplishments than Roger. I understand that most people don’t care about the GOAT, but as far as I can see it is Rafa who it should go to. I agree with Beverley, Other than John McEnroe most commentators are smitten with Roger and boost about how great is… They can’t forget that it is Rafa & only Rafa who stopped Roger from adding more slams to his résumé. They often refer Roger to the ballerina of tennis and Rafa the bull… If I wanted to see a ballerina I would go see a ballet, but would much rather watch Rafa the bull playing tennis… He has excited and thrilled me for many many years( He probably is responsible for a few gray hairs and wrinkles on me, but he is worth it)! ! He has given me countless hours and hours of enjoyment & I will forever love him and appreciate him for all that he has given tennis and his fans! Watching Rafa & Tomic now… The odd couple,,,, But they are doing well and seem to be having great fun!

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      3. Margo

        LOL Love your balanced comment. You can add my grays to yours. Instead of referring to your pooch, I turned him/her into a feline. Mea culpa. I won’t have your pooch metamorphosized into a feline ever again.

        RAFA ROCKS

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      4. Margo

        Rafa very likely has brought more people to tennis than any other player. I love playing chess, but found tennis boring until that very first time I saw Rafa while I was channel surfing. That speaks volumes as far as I am concerned. I may not be able to offer tennis analysis, but I don’t need to when I’ve got a Rafa.

        RAFA ROCKS

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  10. va4favre

    Rafa’s doubles match is the second on Stadium 2 tomorrow. That will be about 12:30pm PDT and 3:30 pm EDT. It should be even hotter tomorrow.

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  11. va4favre

    The Tennis Channel had a live interview with Rafa after his match. That is rare since Rafa usually does these only once per tournament. Rafa seemed happy with his play in the heat. He said again that he loves IW. It is widely known that Rafa is Ellison’s favorite player and he stays at one of his guest houses. As Rafa fans, we have no problem agreeing with Ellison on this!

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