Indian Wells: Idol Rafael Nadal too good for Sebastian Korda
Rafael Nadal roared back from 2-5 down in the third set to defeat American Sebastian Korda 6-2, 1-6, 7-6 (7-3) in the second round at Indian Wells on Saturday and remain unbeaten in 2022.
After cruising through the first set in 35 minutes, the Spaniard struggled to cope with a more aggressive approach from the 21-year-old who stormed through the second. Nadal’s normally solid serve let him down in the third and he committed his seventh double fault to fall two breaks down before fighting back to force a tie-break.
“Everyone knows this is my favourite place to play and it is amazing to play in front of all you guys,” Nadal told the supportive crowd.
The loss will sting for Korda, who grew up idolising the 21-time grand slam champion and even named his cat after him. “He started playing a lot different,” Korda said of Nadal’s play after he fell behind 2-5 in the decider.
Newly-crowned world No.1 Daniil Medvedev dispatched Tomas Machac 6-3, 6-2 to cruise into the third round.