Roger Federer teams up with Rafael Nadal in doubles for 'wonderful' farewell at Laver Cup

Swiss great will play the final match of his career in London on Friday

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Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal will team up in doubles at the Laver Cup on Friday in what is set to be the Swiss great's final match of a long and illustrious career.

The 41-year-old Federer will play competitively for the last time in London, turning out for Team Europe alongside Nadal, Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic – the three biggest rivals of his 24-year career.

Federer, who has won 20 Grand Slam titles, has struggled with knee injuries in recent years and multiple surgeries finally took their toll.

The order of play released by the organisers for the opening day of the tournament – founded by Federer’s management company – showed the Swiss great and Nadal will play the last match of the evening at London's O2 Arena against the American pair of Jack Sock and Frances Tiafoe.

Federer and Nadal will pair up for Team Europe against the Team World duo of US Open semi-finalist Frances Tiafoe and Jack Sock.

“I'm not sure if I can handle it all but I'll try,” said Federer. “This one feels a whole lot different. I'm happy to have him on my team and not playing against him.

“Playing with Rafa feels really different. To be able to do it one more time, I'm sure it will be wonderful and I'll try my very best. I'll enjoy it but it will be very hard.”

Nadal said he was looking forward to an unforgettable doubles pairing with Federer.

“One of the most important, if not the most important players in my tennis career is leaving,” the Spaniard said on Thursday.

“At the end, this moment will be difficult. I'm super-excited and grateful to play with him.”

They have played each other 40 times in all, with Nadal winning 26 times. The Spaniard came out on top in their classic 2008 Wimbledon final, considered by many the greatest match in history; while Federer won their last showdown, in the 2019 semi-finals at the All England Club.

The singles matches at the Laver Cup will be two-time Grand Slam runner-up Casper Ruud against Sock, and 2021 French Open finalist Stefanos Tsitsipas against Diego Schwartzman during the day session, and three-time major champion Murray against Alex de Minaur at night, before the Federer-Nadal doubles match.

Italian Matteo Berrettini, the first alternate for Europe, will take Federer's place over the weekend.

Federer hasn’t competed in singles or doubles since a quarter-final loss at Wimbledon to Hubert Hurkacz in July 2021.

Updated: September 22, 2022, 1:27 PM
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