New Delhi: The star-studded Spanish tennis squad arrived at New Delhi on Monday ahead of their Davis Cup World Group play-off tie against India.
The 20-member squad, which includes the likes of 14-time Grand Slam winner Rafael Nadal and World No 13 David Ferrer, got down to business straight away after landing in the capital in the morning, taking to the courts at the DLTA complex for a practice session in evening.
Spain, one of the powerhouses of world tennis, has won five Davis Cup titles since 2004, the last one coming in 2011.
Although they did not need to bring their best team to beat India, Nadal asserted that Spain are not taking the hosts lightly and are in no mood to let go of this opportunity to return to the world group.
"I am representing my country and that's always special motivation. There's always confrontation when you are not playing at home, so difficult. India have a good team, it will be tough. They will be playing at home in front of home crowd in conditions they chose," Nadal told reporters after his first practice session.
"We have a lot of good players in top 100, it's tough for us not to be in world group, so we are looking forward to coming back to the world group, and that's the chance to win here, it's not going to be easy. We need to be ready and play our best," the World No.4 added.
This is Nadal's second visit to India within a span of 12 months and he was impressed with the courts, asserting that he is eager to produce his best in this tie.
"Very nice place. Good people and crowd. After a long trip it was a good practice session here. I feel good to be here again. The court is not very slow and nor too fast. It is a great court to play good tennis," he said.
The Spaniards practised for more than two hours at court No 1 under the watchful eyes of coach Conchita Martinez, who was busy giving instructions to the team in their native language.
Nadal, who engaged in an intense sparring session with Ferrer, felt that the organisers had done the right thing by scheduling the Davis Cup ties in the evening.
"It is very humid here. In this condition it is very necessary to play in the evening and not in the day. The weather suits us better," he said.
Updated Date: Sep 13, 2016 12:41 PM