Nadal calls for changes to the United Cup format to avoid days with nothing at stake

Rafa Nadal likes the United Cup concept, but he says the mixed-team tournament format should be changed to ensure there are fewer wasted matches in future with the qualifiers already decided.

Nadal suffered his second consecutive loss at the $15 million event on Monday when he fell to Alex De Minaur, but neither Spain nor Australia had a chance of reaching the next phase after losing their opening ties against the United Kingdom.

“Although the idea is great, I find a negative point in this competition: it is not ideal that we are here today playing for nothing,” said Nadal, who next heads to Melbourne for his Australian Open title defense.

“It is not good for the tournament that today we play against Australia with both of us out of the tournament, that would not happen if the country that did not play at the beginning plays the one that lost on the first day, so all the qualifiers would make sense. That will make the competition improves for the future,” he said on Monday.

After the UK beat Spain 3-1 in their opening match, Nadal skipped the no-stakes mixed doubles tie.

The inaugural edition of the United Cup takes place in Sydney, Perth and Brisbane.

Melissa Galbraith
Melissa Galbraith is the World News reporter for Globe Live Media. She covers all the major events happening around the World. From Europe to Americas, from Asia to Antarctica, Melissa covers it all. Never miss another Major World Event by bookmarking her author page right here.