Rafael Nadal enjoyed a straightforward beginning to his campaign at the 2020 ATP Finals, beating Andrey Rublev 6-3 6-4.

The Spaniard has never yet won the year-end showpiece event, and was expected to have a tough test against the in-form Rublev.

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Indeed, the Russian went into the match with a tour-leading 40 victories across the course of the season.

But the fine form meant nothing in the O2 Arena, where his serve was easily dismantled by the world number two.

He also failed to muster a single break point opportunity in the entire match as Nadal cruised to his first straight-sets victory in the Finals since 2016.

Nadal will play Dominic Thiem next - who also enjoyed a comfortable win in his opener against Stefanos Tsitsipas.

"I think it's a positive start," Nadal said.

"Always here the first match is tricky. You are playing the best of the best. Now I have a super tough match against Dominic."

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