Rafael Nadal vs Alex De Minaur start time: How to watch Barcelona Open comeback

The 37-year-old returns to clay this week for the first time since winning the 2022 French Open

Jamie Braidwood
Wednesday 17 April 2024 08:29 BST
Not here to be celebrated - Nadal eyes competitiveness during his return to tennis

Rafael Nadal continues his eagerly anticipated return to clay at the Barcelona Open this afternoon - but the 37-year-old faces a tough test against the World No 11 Alex De Minaur.

Nadal made a triumphant return to action on Monday as he eased to a 6-2 6-3 win over Flavio Cobolli - in what was the Spaniard’s first match since January and his first appearance on clay since winning his 14th French Open title at Roland Garros in 2022.

Nadal’s comeback year has been disrupted by injuries, but he will aim to build up his fitness ahead of what could be a final appearance at the French Open this summer, with the 22-time grand slam champion considering retirement at the end of the season.

"It means a lot to me to be able to play one more time here in Barcelona, a place that I have amazing success and a lot of unforgettable memories,” Nadal said.

"So, I am just trying to enjoy every moment and I am excited about being on court in a professional tournament again, especially here at home."

How can I watch the Barcelona Open?

The Barcelona Open is live on Sky Sports Tennis. If you’re not a Sky customer you can grab a NOWTV Day Pass here to watch without a subscription.

If you’re travelling abroad and want to watch major sporting events, you might need a VPN to unblock your streaming app. Our VPN round-up is here to help and includes deals on VPNs in the market. Viewers using a VPN need to make sure that they comply with any local regulations where they are, and also with the terms of their service provider.

What time is Rafael Nadal playing?

Nadal will be in action against Alex De Minaur from 3:00pm BST on Wednesday 17th April - but it may be slightly later depending on the earlier matches on Centre Court, the Pista Rafa Nadal.

What has Nadal said ahead of his return?

"In 2022 I cannot and I was not able to think about how long it would take me to be back playing in a clay-court tournament because at the time I was enjoying the title of Roland Garros and trying to be ready for the next event.

"That is what I have been doing my whole life. To think about what is going on day-by-day and just try to adapt to the situation, try to be able to improve under any circumstances to be a better player. That is what I did all my life and it worked well.

"Now I am in a different perspective of my tennis career, a different moment and I am trying to enjoy every moment.

"I was not able to spend a lot of days on tour over the last two years, so I just want to enjoy every day I am able to play with the guys on a professional level. That means a lot for me."

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