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Result: Rafael Nadal begins 2016 with victory

Rafael Nadal begins the 2016 season with a win at the Mubadala World Tennis Championship exhibition event in Abu Dhabi.

Rafael Nadal has begun the new year with a win, defeating Milos Raonic in straight sets at the Mubadala World Tennis Championship in Abu Dhabi over the weekend.

Rafael Nadal in action during the Mubadala World Tennis Championship on January 2, 2016© AFP

The world number five warmed up for the new season with a 7-6(2) 6-3 victory in 90 minutes at the exhibition event on Saturday, having defeated compatriot David Ferrer in the semi-finals a day earlier.

Nadal told the tournament's official website: "It's a great feeling. It's a great way to start the new season winning against two of the best players in the world without a doubt, and playing at the right level - I played a good level of tennis and I'm happy for that.

"I'm happy to win the title here in Abu Dhabi again. I tried hard every year [to win] but I feel that I arrived in very good shape this year."

Hungry Rafael Nadal celebrates winning the Mubadala World Tennis Championship on January 2, 2016© AFP

Nadal, whose 2015 season was plagued by injury and poor form, will now head to Doha for the Qatar Open, where he is seeded second behind world number one Novak Djokovic.

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Rafael Nadal plays a backhand during the ATP World Tour Finals match against Andy Murray at the O2 Arena in London on November 18, 2015
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