Christopher Clare

Credit…Peter David Josek / Associated Press

Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer are not a new doubles team. In the year In 2011, they teamed up for some hit and miss games in a charity match in Melbourne, Australia, but their real debut came. September 2017 in Prague The first edition of the Laver Cup team event.

Both were at the top of their games, sharing the four Grand Slam singles titles that year. Nadal is ranked No. 1. Federer is ranked No. 2. Both were excited about the chance to join forces when I interviewed them in the back seat of the van before the match.

The trip was brilliant – Prague has a lot of cobblestones. But the mood was light as a GD Federer cracked everything Nadal said.

“I hope we didn’t expect too much because we’re too old now,” Federer said of their partnership.

Federer and Nadal looked great in their matching blue shirts and white bandanas. Federer meshed quickly with Nadal on the Deuce court and the ad court, despite a collision when Nadal retreated to hit the top.

“We played with a lot of energy,” Nadal said afterward, shaking his head and smiling. “It was good fun. As everyone knows when we play together for the first time and sometimes it’s difficult to make decisions when you play with a partner for the first time.

It was an extended photo op to be sure, but in a tightly contested match, Federer and Nadal hugged each other in victory as they overcame world number one Jack Sock and Sam Currier 6-4, 1-6, (10-5) (The Laver Cup instead of a full third set It uses a 10-point scale from the beginning.

“I’m happy to win the one match we’ve played so far,” Federer said in an on-court interview.

They will play one more game on Friday night, with Sock returning to the opposite side with new partner Francis Tiafoe. Federer, 41, and Nadal, 36, are both older now, but for Federer, at least, there is nothing to save his energy. In tennis terms, this is it.

“I will try my best,” Federer said. “I hope to be good there, and of course I will enjoy it, but it will be difficult.”

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