Tennis-Federer and Nadal team up for doubles on Friday at Laver Cup

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By Martyn Herman

LONDON (Reuters) -Swiss icon Roger Federer will bring the curtain down on his glittering career by teaming up with great rival Rafa Nadal at the Laver Cup on Friday.

The 41-year-old announced last week that the team event being played at London’s O2 Arena would be his last.

Federer’s suspect right knee, the injury that forced him to call time on a 24-year career that included 20 Grand Slam singles titles and worldwide admiration, means he will feature in only one match at the three-day clash between a Bjorn Borg-captained Europe and John McEnroe’s the Rest of the World.

But the fact he will bow out for his last competitive match with record 22-time Grand Slam champion Nadal alongside him is a dream scenario. They will take on American duo Jack Sock and Frances Tiafoe in Friday’s last match.

“It’s going to be a different kind of pressure to be part of this historic moment,” Nadal, who has shared an epic career-long rivalry with Federer, told reporters.

“It’s going to be something amazing and unforgettable for me. I’m super excited. maybe we can create a good moment and maybe win the match.”

Federer cut a relaxed figure as he sat with his European team mates including 21-time Grand Slam champion Novak Djokovic and three-time major winner Andy Murray.

He had said previous day that it would be beautiful to play his last match on the same side of the net as Spaniard Nadal and captain Borg, unsurprisingly, obliged.

“I’m not sure if I can handle (all the emotions) but I will try,” Federer, whose presence had fans flocking to watch practice sessions on Thursday, said.

“This one feels a whole lot different. I’m happy to have him on my team and not playing against him.

“To be able to do it one more time, I’m sure it will be wonderful and I’ll try my very best.”

(Reporting by Martyn Herman; editing by Pritha Sarkar)

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