Afternoon all, welcome to our latest live blog from the 2018 French Open.
Nadal, who is bidding to lift his 11th French Open title and equal Margaret Court’s all-time record for most singles titles at the same Grand Slam event, is expecting a ‘difficult’ match against the world number 78.
“It’s going to be a difficult match,” Nadal said. “I have to be prepared to play very strongly, very aggressively, and I hope that I will be able to move on the next day knowing that it’s going to be a tough match.
Nadal opened up his Roland Garros campaign with a straight-sets but far from straightforward win over Simone Bolelli in a rain-delayed match in Paris.
Rebooted Rafael Nadal remains master of clay
“The court is more slippery than usual and I slid a lot when I started off or when I moved to another side, and it was quite complicated,” he said.
“You can see that there are many more whiter zones than other years, because there are little pebbles underneath, and that’s why you don’t have the proper grip on the court.”
“It was a good match. It was a difficult match, because he played so aggressive and very well, I think,” Nadal added.
“I resisted, you know, always difficult to play against players that wants to hit every ball so hard, and even more if it’s the first round.
“He played well, I think, so well, playing with lot of risk but having success with all of the risk that he take. “But it was difficult today to play so aggressive being in the first round and against a player who really came on court and decided to play that strong.”
Pella can be a tricky customer, but it’s tough to see anything but a straight-sets win for Nadal.