◼️ The Spanish won the Final in the German young Alexander Zverev and returned to the top of the ATP ranking.

The Spaniard Rafael Nadal won for the eighth time in his career the Masters of Rome, last great date before Roland Garros, beating this Sunday in the Final the young German Alexander Zverev 6-1, 1-6 and 6-3, with which will recover on Monday the number 1 of the ATP ranking.

Nadal eliminated a year ago in Quarterfinals in the Italian capital by Dominic Thiem, needed to lift the trophy to oust Roger Federer from the top of the world rankings.

The Swiss chose not to participate in the season on clay, including Roland Garros, to concentrate on grass and especially Wimbledon.

The 31-year-old Spaniard’s victory over the world No. 3 on Sunday came after a rain interruption in the third set when Zverev won 3-2 and served to go 4-2, but the Spaniard chained four games in his favor after the restart and could thus defeat the defender of the title.

The first title of Nadal in Rome was in 2005, surpassing then in the Final against the Argentine Guillermo Coria, and then raised the trophy in 2006, 2007, 2009, 2010, 2012 and 2013. He was, therefore, five years without being able to be the champion in this emblematic event.

The path of Nadal to the challenge of winning his eleventh Roland Garros has been almost perfect.

Before his success this Sunday in Rome, the Spanish star won for the eleventh time the Monte Carlo Masters and the Barcelona tournament.

The only slip in his season on clay was given last week at the Masters in Madrid, where he lost in the quarterfinals against the Austrian Dominic Thiem.

Last year he also won all his matches of the European season on clay with the exception of a duel against Thiem – then in the quarters of Rome – and then he was very superior at Roland Garros, where he won then his tenth crown in Paris.

Alexander Zverev (21 years old), champion in Munich and Madrid in the previous weeks, was close to winning also in Rome, but the final reaction of Nadal prevented him. He was confirmed, in any case, as one of the great contenders to fight for the title at Roland Garros.

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