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Alex de Minaur beat Andy Murray 5-7, 6-3, 7-10 in a 10-game tiebreak from first. A bit of a slow starter, but it features some very high quality in the last half hour. Fighting back from a set down, the 23-year-old Aussie delivered a desperately needed point for Team World, who didn’t want to fall into a 3-0 hole out of the gate.

Team Europe reacts during Andy Murray’s match against Team World’s Alex Di Minor on Friday night at London’s O2 Arena. Photo: Andrew Boyers/ActionImage/Reuters

A quick refresher on the Laver Cup format and where things are ahead of tonight’s nightcap A team-based, three-day event that is golf’s equivalent of the Ryder Cup, the competition consists of three singles and one doubles match each day. One point is awarded for every win on the first day, two points for every win on the second day and three points for every win on the third day.

Team Europe has won all five editions so far, although the title was decided in the 12th and final match on two occasions. Federer won the trophy in 2017 and Alexander Zverev did the same in 2019.

The Europeans already lead 2-0 at this year’s event after singles wins in this afternoon’s session against Kasper Rudd and Stefanos Tsitsipas over Jack Sock and Diego Schwartzman respectively.

Team Europe, left, and Team World meet in London for the sixth edition of the Laver Cup. Photo: Julian Feeney/Getty Images for Lover Cup

Federer, Nadal and Novak Djokovic are all playing together in Team Europe for the first time. The Big Three, as they are widely known, have won 63 of the last 77 Grand Slam championships (Nadal 22, Djokovic 21, Federer 20).

De Minaur took just the second set in her ongoing match with Murray. Under the rules, the match will be decided by a 10-point tiebreaker rather than a full third set, meaning tonight’s main event should be off and running at the top of the hour.

Introduction

Hello and welcome to the O2 Arena for the final match of Roger Federer’s storied career. The 41-year-old Swiss great, who has not competed since losing to Hubert Hurkaj in the quarter-finals at Wimbledon in July 2021, announced last week that he was stepping away from professional tennis after multiple operations on his right knee. His long return to the men’s tour is unbearable.

And so he departs tonight in London with his long-time rival and friend Rafael Nadal in a team event set up by his management company. The duo will compete for Europe against the Team World doubles pair of Frances Tiafoe and Jack Sock.

This is not the first time that Federer and Nadal have appeared on the same side of the court: they won a doubles match together in the first edition of the Laver Cup in 2017. But they are better known for their roles in a great game. rivalry in sports history. They have met in singles a total of 40 times (Nadal won 26), including 14 times in Grand Slam tournaments (the Spaniard won 10), none more memorable than their landmark showdown in the 2008 Wimbledon final.

“I saw him play on TV before I came on tour. I saw him succeed on TV, and then (we) were able to create an amazing rivalry together,” Nadal said yesterday. “And on the other hand, something we’re probably very proud of is a friendly rivalry. Tomorrow is going to be a special thing. difficult Everything is going to be difficult to manage, especially for Roger, no doubt. But for me, too. Finally, one of the most important players – if not the most important player – in my tennis career is leaving.”

‘Most important player of my career’: Nadal on Federer’s retirement – video

Federer and Nadal will take to the court after the conclusion of the first match of the night, a singles meeting between Team Europe’s Andy Murray and Team World’s Alex Di Minor that is currently in the second set.

Brian will be here soon. Meanwhile, Tumaini Carayle faces Federer’s swansong in London tonight.

Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray – a team of three of the greatest male tennis players of all time and four defining competitors of a generation – were tightly packed together for their Laver Cup press conference on Thursday, when they all came together for their final time as professionals.

As they reminisced about their old matches and laughed about shared memories, glorious or devastating depending on the perspective, Federer interrupted: “Sitting here, it’s nice that I go first to the boys,” he said with a laugh. “It feels right.”

In many ways, this final chapter of Federer’s career is dark. Despite his reputation for avoiding serious injury through his career, his final years were blighted by physical problems. Unlike the recent intense, competitive exit of Serena Williams Federer’s knee could not survive more than one brief doubles match. With his Team Europe teammate Nadal in his final clash, he will enter the O2 Arena on Friday night against Team World’s Frances Tiafoe and Jacques Sock hoping to compete at a respectable level only.

But the situation is right. He will face three of the toughest opponents of his life, players who have defined tennis with him for the past decade and a half, taking it forward in many ways. Between them they have won 66 Grand Slam titles, faced each other 234 times and spent 933 weeks at No. 1. For over a decade they’ve packed out the next steps to every major event and prevented almost everyone from succeeding.

“Tomorrow is going to be a special thing,” Nadal said. “I think very hard, hard. It will all be difficult to manage, especially for Roger, no doubt. For me too. Finally one of the most important players, if not the most important player of my tennis career, is leaving, no?

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