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Rafael Nadal is defeated by Carlos Alcaraz in a special exhibition match held in Las Vegas

<p>Carlos Alcaraz defeated Rafael Nadal 3-6, 6-4, 14-12 in a thrilling exhibition match in Las Vegas on Sunday to get ready for the ATP Indian Wells Masters.</p>
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<p>Both Spanish celebrities had the opportunity to put their physical fitness to the test during the competition at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino, which was streamed live by Netflix.</p>
<p>22-time Grand Slam winner Rafael Nadal missed most of 2018 due to a hip ailment he suffered during the Australian Open.</p>
<p>Before having to withdraw from the first Grand Slam of the season in Melbourne due to a minor muscle strain, the 37-year-old made his return at the Brisbane International in January.</p>
<p>Declaring that he was “not ready to compete,” he abandoned intentions to play again at the Qatar Open in February.</p>
<p>After winning the first set against Alcaraz, he informed journalist Mary Joe Fernandez that he was feeling “much better than expected.”</p>
<p>And when Alcaraz eventually sealed the deal, he still had enough left in the tank to preserve five match points in the match tiebreak.</p>
<p>Before Indian Wells, where Nadal has won three times, it was a promising showing. In 2022, at his most recent visit to Indian Wells, Rafael Nadal finished in second against American Taylor Fritz.</p>
<p>On Thursday, the experienced Spanish player will compete in Indian Wells’ opening round. Alcaraz will get a first-round bye and be seeded in the California desert.</p>
<p>Now ranked second in the world, Alcaraz will attempt to become the first player since Novak Djokovic’s 2014–2016 three-peat to successfully defend his Indian Wells championship.</p>
<p>However, the 20-year-old Spaniard has recently struggled with his own injuries. Less than two weeks ago, he had to withdraw from his Rio Open first-round match after rolling his right ankle on the second point of his match against Thiago Monteiro.</p>
<p>The two-time Grand Slam champion suffered yet another blow when he lost to Nicolas Jarry of Chile in the Buenos Aires semifinals and to Alexander Zverev in the Australian Open quarterfinals.</p>
<p>Alcaraz’s incredible victory against Djokovic at Wimbledon in July of last year stands as his only ATP championship.</p>

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