Federer, Nadal raise more than $3 million with Match in Africa

Tuesday, 11 Feb, 2020

This, the 6th edition of the tournament, was a world-class event that saw 51 954 fans (a world record crowd for a tennis match) gather in the Cape Town stadium to see Roger and Bill Gates take on Trevor and Rafael Nadal in a celebrity-pro doubles.

The Match in Africa will raise proceeds for the Roger Federer Foundation, which provides educational and athletic programs to children in Africa.

For tennis to boom in South Africa, the country needs players featuring at the top-level and now Lloyd Harris and Kevin Anderson are carrying that mantle. Nadal gave everything to get there and walked so fast that he couldn't stop in time and had to jump over the net.

As Nadal said after the match, "It was one of those days that you just don't forget", and those who attended certainly won't.

Springbok captain Siya Kolisi also had the pleasure of meeting the tennis player and shared a heart-warming post to his Instagram page welcoming him.

But the main course of the night came, of course, in the end, with the individual confrontation between Nadal and Federer. The two also played with celebrities Bill Gates and Trevor Noah in a doubles match which was won but Federer/Gates 6-3. For Federer the occasion was "magical", he also explained to Efe, since his mother is South African and in the country he has not only family, but also great childhood memories.

It perhaps surprised few that 20-time Major champion and current world No3 Federer came out the victor after an enjoyable three sets against the 19-time Major champ and world No2 Nadal.

Federer, however, finishing the match with an untouchable backhand half-volley, came away with the win, 6-4, 3-6, 6-3.

Microsoft co-founder Gates played a pinpoint praise volleyball game that the announcer described as "the touch of the billionaire".

Comedian Noah did plenty of good-natured trash talking. He shares an inheritance similar to Federer.

"Events like these remind South Africans what we're capable of". He has a South African mother and a Swiss father.

As she performed, Federer additionally fulfilled the ball lady's duties, changing into a ball boy and throwing two balls onto the courtroom for her. Five years younger, the Spaniard may well go past Federer's record of 20 Grand Slams. The time spent here as a kid was fantastic. "We will see how much more".

"I've never dreamed so far in my dreams". I hope Rafa can do it again one day, come back to this attractive country. "If he catches me, it's ok".