Rafael Nadal, a four-time Mutua Madrid Open champion, will play his opener on Wednesday in the third match on the Manolo Santana centre court. The world number 5 will start his campaign in the sixteenth edition of the only Masters 1000 played in Spain against Italian player Fabio Fognini.
“I’m playing really well”, explained the Mallorcan. “Madrid is a very important event for me, on clay and also in a place where people have always helped me enormously. I feel energetic. I am so excited to be back in Madrid. It could be another important week if I do things well”.
Nadal, 30 years of age, was the champion in 2005, 2010, 2013 and 2014, as well as reaching the final on three other occasions. With a record 42 victories in the Spanish capital, he is the player with the most wins at the Mutua Madrid Open.
Novak Djokovic will also be playing his opener, this time against a Nicolás Almagro who is already match tested having seen off Tommy Robredo in three sets (6-3, 3-6, 6-1). The Serb will start his title defence in the second match on centre court.
David Ferrer will be bidding for victory number 700 as a professional against Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the second match in the Arantxa Sánchez Vicario Stadium. Before them, Kei Nishikori will open proceedings on the second court when he takes on the Argentinian Diego Schwartzman.
Carla and Lara in search of the quarters
Carla Suárez and Lara Arruabarrena will be playing for a place in the quarters of the women’s competition with a little help from the partisan crowd. The Basque player will get the ball rolling on the Manolo Santana court against Anastasija Sevastova, who sent world number three Karolina Pliskova packing, while Suárez will take on Coco Vandeweghe.
The standout match of the day in the WTA competition will see world number two Angelique Kerber square off against Eugenie Bouchard, not before 20:00 in the evening in the Manolo Santana Stadium. The day will be capped off by a match between Stan Wawrinka and Benoit Paire.
See the order of play here.