India 's 'survivor' Nagal seeks support to stay afloat
The 22-year-old earned a string of new admirers at Flushing Meadows when he came out swinging in his Grand Slam main draw debut to win the opening set against Federer at a packed Arthur Ashe Stadium.
Nagal ultimately went down 4-6 6-1 6-2 6-4 to the owner of 20 Grand Slam singles titles but not before breaking Federer's serve three times in a tie he was praying would be his from the moment he heard the Swiss had been drawn against a qualifier.
"It was lot of fun to play on that court ... against Roger. I was happy but I wasn't happy the way I played, I think I could have done better but overall I was satisfied."
After the match Federer predicted a"very solid career" for his opponent, who has never earned a tour-level victory, and said Nagal's game was tailor-made for clay courts.
"He does not want to give you any points, you have to work for it."
If it were not for his fighting spirit, Nagal would probably have never made it from New Delhi to New York in any case.
But the programme shut down after two years. At the age of 12, Nagal returned home to Delhi and stopped playing for a bit.
"It's been tough. I didn't have a sponsor who would say 'yes I am going to cover your whole year's cost'. It was always someone giving us, funding us for a few thousand, here and there. I was trying to survive," he said.
Though the match against Federer made him a recognisable name in his homeland, Nagal said he has not been approached by any new sponsors.
(Reporting by Sudipto Ganguly; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman)Read more: CNA
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