It's probably the boldest tennis match conceived at least since the "Battle of the Sexes" 34 years ago: a Battle of the Surfaces. A match designed around the question: who is the best tennis player in the world? Switzerland's Roger Federer is arguably the best tennis player ever. But while he's been unbeatable on grass courts (à la Wimbledon), another player, Spain's Rafael Nadal, has emerged as the king of clay courts (à la Roland Garros). On May 2nd in Palma de Mallorca, Nadal's home, they will play on a court that's half clay and half grass:
Of course, it is a fabulous marketing coup engineered by the local authorities, who had both the newly built Palma Arena (cost: 50 million euros) and the coming Summer season to promote, and are said to have put 2 million euros into the event. Rules-wise, it will be a normal best-of-three-sets game, with the usual changes of side (and possibly, every time, change of shoes). On his blog, Federer says that "the idea really appeals to me as we each dominate one of the surfaces ... It ought to be interesting to see who chooses the better tactic".
UPDATE 2 May: Nadal beat Federer 7-5, 4-6, 7-6 (10)