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Rafa Nadal will play the Dubai tournament after 15 years of absence

The Spanish tennis player Rafa Nadal will participate in the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships tournament, which begins at the end of February and ends on March 5, after fifteen years of absence from the tournament, now in the ATP 500 category and on hard courts.

“Rafael Nadal will make a grand return to the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships (DDFTC) next month, 15 years after his last competitive appearance in the United Arab Emirates,” the tournament announced.

Nadal, the 2006 champion of the tournament, last played in Dubai in 2008. “As one of the most recognizable personalities in world sport and one of the most decorated players in history, we are delighted to welcome Rafa to the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships after 15 years,” said tournament CEO Colm McLoughlin.

The director of operations and president of the organizing committee of the tournament, Ramesh Cidambi, assured that he was very happy to have the Manacorí back. “Dubai and UAE fans will now have a unique opportunity to see him live at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Stadium and marvel at his passion, energy and talent,” he said.

The Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships is an established tournament on the WTA and ATP circuits, and each year tries to offer fans an “even more enriching” experience. “This year will not be an exception, with this opportunity to see Rafa in his quest to add another title to the 92 titles he has won since 2001,” the tournament said.

After reaching the quarterfinals in Dubai in 2005, Nadal returned in 2006 to beat Tim Henman of Britain and Rainer Schuttler of Germany en route to the final. Against world number 1 and top seed Federer, Nadal triumphed 2-6, 6-4, 6-4, marking his first victory over the Swiss in an ATP final.

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