The hottest ticket in town! Former Tottenham striker Fernando Llorente leads star-studded guest list at the Hexagon Cup in Madrid - as Hollywood megastar Eva Longoria jets in to catch her team in action

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Some of Spain's most recognisable sports stars, models and actors descended on Madrid to catch the hotly-anticipated Hexagon Cup. 

The revolutionary new padel tournament sees six franchise teams - made up of three pairs in Male, Female and Next Gen categories - initially compete in a round robin qualification before fighting for the inaugural title.

The semi-finals and final, which are slated for February 3 and February 4 respectively, are set to be broadcast live on ITV. All other matches can be viewed across a host of networks including DAZN, YouTube and Eurosport.

But for those capable of landing one of the hottest tickets in town, it has proven to be a star-studded affair off the court as much as on it.

Former Tottenham striker Fernando Llorente was pictured court-side, while World Cup winner and Atletico Madrid ace Angel Correa was another to go and watch.

Footballer Fernando Llorente, who once played for Tottenham, attended the Hexagon Cup

Footballer Fernando Llorente, who once played for Tottenham, attended the Hexagon Cup

Footballer Fernando Llorente, who once played for Tottenham, attended the Hexagon Cup

World Cup winner Angel Correa, who plays for Atletico Madrid, was also in attendance

World Cup winner Angel Correa, who plays for Atletico Madrid, was also in attendance

Hollywood megastar Eva Longoria jetted in to support the team that she is sponsoring

Hollywood megastar Eva Longoria jetted in to support the team that she is sponsoring

Former Miss Universe Dayanara Torres (left) was among the star-studded list of VIP guests

Former Miss Universe Dayanara Torres (left) was among the star-studded list of VIP guests

The Hexagon Cup has proven to be the hottest ticket in town in Madrid for its inaugural event

The Hexagon Cup has proven to be the hottest ticket in town in Madrid for its inaugural event

The long list of VIPs also included former Atletico Madrid and Valencia goalkeeper Miguel Ángel Moyá; Colombian racing driver Juan Pablo Montoya; Olympians Brian Afanador and Adrián Ben, who is the reigning European indoor champion in the 800 meters.

Away from sport, the glamorous list of VIPs includes Puerto Rican model, actress, and winner of the Miss Universe 1993 pageant Dayanara Torres.

Argentine model Valeria Mazza, who currently works on the Spanish TV programme Dancing with the Stars, and Spanish actress Marta Hazas, best known for her roles in El Internado, Bandolera or Velvet, were also pictured.

Padel is a racket sport booming in global popularity, with an estimated 25million active players worldwide. 

Since securing the backing of DMG Ventures, the inaugural Hexagon Cup has successfully lured the very best international padel players to compete in six teams, with a prize fund of €1million (£860,000) up for grabs.

Popular singer Vanessa Martin made space in her busy schedule to attend the Hexagon Cup

Popular singer Vanessa Martin made space in her busy schedule to attend the Hexagon Cup

Padel is booming in popularity, leading to increasing crowds for events like the Hexagon Cup

Padel is booming in popularity, leading to increasing crowds for events like the Hexagon Cup

A helicopter view of Madrid Arena, which is hosting the first ever Hexagon Cup this week

A helicopter view of Madrid Arena, which is hosting the first ever Hexagon Cup this week

The Teams

Team Hexagon

Team Owner: Fans

Male: Paquito Navarro and Juan Martín Díaz.

Female: Alejandra Salazar and Tamara Icardo.

Next Gen: Pablo Cardona and Alonso Rodriguez.

Rafa Nadal Academy powered by Richard Mille

Team Owner: Rafa Nadal Academy

Male: Álex Ruiz and Franco Stupaczuk.

Female: Martita Ortega and Gemma Triay.

Next Gen: Guillermo Collado and Daniel Santigosa.

Team RL9

Team Owner: Robert Lewandowski

Male: Agustín Tapia and Jon Sanz.

Female: Ariana Sánchez and Claudia Jensen.

Next Gen: David Gala and Enzo Jensen

 

AD/vantage Team

Team Owner: Andy Murray / AD Global Sports

Male: Martín di Nenno and Juan Tello.

Female: Delfina Brea and Sofía Araujo.

Next Gen: Pablo García and Pol Hernández

ElevenEleven Team USA

Team Owner: Eva Longoria

Male: Fernando Belasteguín and Luciano Capra.

Female: Paula Josemaría and Alejandra Alonso.

Next Gen: Álex Chozas and Emilio Sánchez

Team Bella Puerto Rico

Team Owner: Carlos López-Lay and María Esteve

Male: Arturo Coello and Coki Nieto.

Female: Bea González and Claudia González.

Next Gen: Fran Guerrero and Rodrigo Coello.

 

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The Hexagon Cup has been backed by high-profile sports stars including Rafa Nadal, Robert Lewandowksi and Andy Murray.

Notorious actress Eva Longoria and business tycoons Carlos Lopez-Lay and Maria Esteve have joined Murray, Lewandowski and Nadal in providing teams for the tournament, with the sixth and final team dedicated to the fans.

Longoria is due to fly in to watch over the weekend.  

Launched with the strapline, 'For the fans, for the players, for the game', the Hexagon Cup has eagerly placed spectators at the forefront of their planning, with live music, entertainers and padel experiences accompanying the sporting action at Madrid Arena. 

Two-time Wimbledon champion Murray, who is team owner of AD/vantage, boasts world No 4 Martin di Nenno and world No 10 Juan Tello in the male category.

AD/vantage is also blessed with two top 10-ranked women's padel stars in Delfina Brea (3) and Sofía Araujo (8), who promise to forge a formidable duo in Madrid.

Padel has boomed in recent years and is estimated to have 25million active players worldwide

Padel has boomed in recent years and is estimated to have 25million active players worldwide

The inaugural Hexagon Cup kickstarted the 2024 padel season in Madrid on Wednesday

The inaugural Hexagon Cup kickstarted the 2024 padel season in Madrid on Wednesday

Tennis legend Andy Murray (right), pictured next to brother Jamie (left) with padel in hand, has backed Hexagon Cup team AD/vantage ahead of this week's groundbreaking tournament

Tennis legend Andy Murray (right), pictured next to brother Jamie (left) with padel in hand, has backed Hexagon Cup team AD/vantage ahead of this week's groundbreaking tournament

Spanish youngsters Pablo García and Pol Hernández will represent Murray in the Next Gen category, with the former having won a silver medal in the European Games last year.

Murray's franchise will take on the Rafa Nadal Academy in both the men's and women's round robins, with Eva Longoria-backed ElevenEleven Team USA making up the male group and fan-led Team Hexagon Cup completing the women's pool. 

Rafa Nadal Academy managing director Maribel - sister of the 22-time Grand Slam champion - spoke exclusively to Mail Sport ahead of the tournament. 

Spanish athletes, in particular, have really taken to padel.  

Earlier this week Spanish football legends Iker Casillas and Juanfran Torres locked horns in an entertaining game of padel on the opening day of the Hexagon Cup, which was described by organisers as a 'dream to come to life'. 

The Hexagon Cup was described as a 'dream to come to life' by the tournament's founder

The Hexagon Cup was described as a 'dream to come to life' by the tournament's founder 

The Hexagon Cup's debut started with a padel derby between Real Madrid Legends and Atletico Madrid Legends, with the teams captained by Casillas and Juanfran respectively. 

With the two Madrid football clubs set to face off in LaLiga on Sunday, the padel game served as an appetiser for the derby at the Bernabeu. 

Despite losing the match to his fierce Atletico rivals, Casillas said: 'I love padel and to see an event like this in Madrid fills me with pride. 

'Tournaments like the Hexagon Cup help the internationalisation of the sport and I am delighted to be here today'. 

Victorious captain Juanfran added: 'A few years ago padel players didn't have so much visibility and tournaments like the Hexagon Cup show how much the sport is growing.'

Following the opening day, Hexagon Cup founder Enrique Buenaventura said: 'Finally after six months of planning and preparation, the Hexagon Cup dream has come to life. 

'The players are delighted with the competition, there is a great atmosphere with an amazing Fan Zone, and this is truly a level of experience never seen before in padel. 

'We urge sports fans to come and enjoy the event and see for themselves, as it is not to be missed!'

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