Sunday, 24 June, 2018

Rafael Nadal lifts record 11th French Open title

French Open Men's Singles Day 15: Nadal value to lift the trophy with ease Rafael Nadal vs Dominic Thiem, French Open 2018 men's final - live score updates
Rita Gibson | 11 June, 2018, 04:55

ESPN's Nicolas Pereira breaks down Rafael Nadal's record 11th French Open title following his win in straight sets over Austria's Dominic Thiem.

Dejected but gracious in defeat, Thiem told Nadal and the Philippe Chatrier court that his extended record for the most men's Grand Slam wins at any tournament was "one of the most awesome things in sport".

- Nadal coasts to a record 10th French Open title, demolishing Wawrinka in a brutally one-sided final which also earns the Spaniard a 15th Grand Slam crown.

The top-seeded Nadal won the match 6-4, 6-3, 6-2 at Roland Garros in Paris against Thiem, a 24-year-old who is ranked No. 7.

Despite his remarkable efforts, the 32-year-old remains three titles behind Federer, who will be targeting a 21st Slam win at Wimbledon next month.

"I think today I played my best match of the tournament", Nadal said.

Nadal has won six of his nine matches against Thiem, all of them coming on that famously hard red clay.

There was late anxiety for Nadal as the predicted thunderstorms loomed and he needed his left forearm massaged after beginning to suffer from cramp.

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With Novak Djokovic far from his best and Andy Murray still a question mark after hip surgery, per Kevin Mitchell of the Guardian, the route for the likes of Federer and Nadal is about as clear as they could hope. Whether it was at the Masters tournaments in Monte Carlo, Madrid, or Rome-whether it was his home tournament in Barcelona-Nadal nearly never lost on the Spaniard.

Nadal -5.5 games is available on the Exchange at [1.68] and given the fact that Nadal has tended to dominate Thiem on non-quick clay, this should be a very likely outcome if Nadal wins the final.

German footballer Mario Gotze - who is not in Russian Federation with the national team but who scored the winning goal for his team in the final in Brazil four years ago - also paid tribute to Nadal. However, in Open Era, he is the first player ever (man or woman) to complete La Undécima in a single Grand Slam event.

Up a break at 2-1 in the third set, Nadal stopped serving after a fault because he couldn't straighten his left middle finger.

The Austrian is one of just three players to down Nadal on clay at least three times. He played a great two weeks. When a return went long on a fifth match point, Nadal raised his arms in joy.

But the Austrian freed his shoulders and broke back in the third game with a forehand victor - pumping his fists in the direction of coach Gunter Bresnik. After guzzling water during his visit from the doctor, Nadal was back to playing his unmistakable brand of almost unbeatable clay-court tennis.

Thiem put up a good fight in his opening service game of the third set, saving four breakpoints.

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