An afternoon of premieres and Juan Martín Díaz's return

After a year out injured, Juan Martin Diaz is back

An afternoon of premieres and Juan Martín Díaz's return

The Olímpico de Badalona offered us an afternoon to remember. The time had come after a year on the sidelines for Juan Martín Díaz to make his return on the World Padel Tour alongside his new partner Paquito Navarro. With the same determination as always but with the nerves of a rookie, Diaz grabbed his racket to compete on court once again. A return that big names such as the former Barcelona and Spain international Carles Puyol didn't want to miss. Taking them on were Chico Gomes and Ernesto Moreno. A consolidated pairing looking to move up in the rankings. There were intense duels at the net and Gomes's defence didn't allow Juan or Paquito to break away. Moreno was causing a lot of damage with his volleys to the fence and Navarro and Diaz were forced to go up a couple of gears. The machine started to function and they took the first set 6-3. The second set was a horror movie for Moreno and Gomes. They didn't feel comfortable on court and Juan and Paquito's magic shone through to win 6-0. Diaz and Navarro's adventure continues at the Estrella Damm Catalunya Master.

The second match at the Olimpico saw another pairing making its debut. Fans had the opportunity of seeing Mati Díaz and Ale Galán take their first steps as a pairing. A duo that combines experience and youth, intensity and power, a lot of power. Matias Nicoletti and Toni Bueno had the difficult task of trying to spoil the part, and despite their best efforts, Galan and Diaz showed all their potential and took both sets 6-1. On paper everyone had them down as potential underdogs and, given the evidence, it's clear everyone is going to have to look out for them.

The third match of the afternoon at the Olimpico de Badalona was another delicatessen for the fans. Sanyo Gutiérrez and Maxi Sánchez were back together again. Two of the best players in the world that not only have bags of quality but also know each other, meaning they won't an adaptation process. Another new pairing for 2018, Martin 'The Hammer' Piñeiro and Willy Lahoz will look to be an important pairing this season but were handed a tricky draw. 6-0 was the score in the first set for Sanyo and Maxi. Things changed in the second, with Piñeiro and Lahoz letting rip to force a decideer. It was 2-2 when Gutierrez and Sanchez broke Lahoz. Maxi and Sanyo then cruised to the finish line to win 6-2 and make the last sixteen of the Estrella Damm Catalunya Master.



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