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Raonic, Nadal to face off at Indian Wells Thursday on TSN

Milos Raonic Milos Raonic - The Canadian Press

The BNP Paribas Open at Indian Wells got started on Wednesday, but perhaps the most interesting match in the first round features veterans Rafael Nadal and Canada's Milos Raonic on Thursday.

You can watch Indian Wells LIVE on TSN3, and stream multiple matches on the TSN Multiplex on and the TSN App.

Often referred to as the "fifth Grand Slam", Indian Wells is the most-attended tennis tournament outside of the four annual majors - the Australian Open, Roland-Garros, Wimbledon and the US Open. 

Among the entrants this year are the tournament's five-time champion - tied for the most all-time - Novak Djokovic, the defending champion in Carlos Alcaraz and three Canadians on the men's side - Felix Auger-Aliassime, Denis Shapovalov and Raonic.

Raonic, 33, returned to the tennis circuit last summer after more than a two-year break due to injury problems. His loss in the finals to Djokovic at the 2016 Indian Wells is the most successful run in the singles tournament for any Canadian man.

Nadal, 37, is playing his second tournament since the 2023 Australian Open. He made the quarterfinals at Brisbane in the first week of the 2024 season.

He has three wins at Indian Wells, has been a finalist five times and finished a semi-finalist or better in eight consecutive tournaments from 2006-13. 

This is the 11th career meeting between the two players, and Nadal has historically handled the Canadian very well, with wins in eight of their first 10 contests. In their lone meeting at Indian Wells, Raonic was the winner in a 4-6, 7-6(10), 7-5 classic in 2015.

Shapovalov will kick off his tournament on Thursday as well against Botic van de Zandschulp, while Auger-Aliassime awaits his opponent for Friday.