Resurgent Rafa Nadal takes Madrid Open title

Roger Federer

Nadal will be expected to continue his dominance over Thiem later on Sunday, May 14, and given the way he has dominated the clay court tournaments this year, the Spaniard will be expected to win the Madrid Open.

The title is Nadal's fifth in the capital of his homeland and sees him move level with Novak Djokovic on 30 ATP 1000 crowns, a record he could claim outright if he can triumph in Rome next week.

Despite being in his home country, Madrid is well-known for being Nadal's "least" successful spring clay event, but he has now achieved four titles, three finals and one semifinal on red clay there, along with an early loss in 2012 when the event made an ill-fated experiment with blue clay.

A little less than two weeks ago, Nadal had beaten the 23-year-old Austrian in the finals of the Barcelona Open.

He also showed courage in the final game of the match, forcing four break points on Nadal's serve as both players gave everything, until Nadal finally claimed the title at the fourth time of asking.

"To try to win Roland Garros, you don't need to be No. 4 or No. 1 or No. 5, what you need is to play tennis very well", Nadal said. "It's really important being able to make it to another final in a Masters 1000, especially here in Madrid, at home".

Playing his first-ever Masters 1000 final, the Austrian never looked fazed by the occasion and despite being broken in the first game of the second set, continued to fight till the end. "I saved a few set points playing some good shots with my forehand and after that I went for it".

"The truth is I was up against an opponent who in the next five to 10 years will be fighting for the most important titles so I'm very happy to have won; it was a very exciting game", Nadal told Television Espanola.

"I got a break in the first game", Thiem said, as quoted on TennisWorldUSA. "I don't think it changes a lot for me".

World No 58 Evans had chances to break and recover from a hard start at 4-1 down in the first set, but Vesely showed his fighting spirit by saving every one of Evans's eight break points in the contest. "After that I went for it". "I'm not thinking about the race or anything like that", said Nadal. “Sometimes against the best players in the world, you even lose when you play well.”. I'm going to enjoy the next hours, then I'll think about Rome. But in December or January, I was not expecting to play badly, because I knew I was doing a very good off-season. "I take more positives than negatives into the next week in Rome".



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