◼️ Rafa keeps his throne and the #1 ATP ranking after defeating in straight sets the Austrian Dominic Thiem.
Rafael Nadal has captured an extraordinary 11th Roland-Garros title following a masterful clay-court display against final debutant Dominic Thiem.
The Spaniard, who first won in Paris back in 2005, triumphed 6-4 6-3 6-2 on a warm, humid afternoon at Court Philippe-Chatrier.
It’s his second straight Roland-Garros title and extends his winning streak on Parisian clay to 16; his last loss at the tournament came in the 2015 quarter-finals to Novak Djokovic.
Many expected this match to be an absorbing, evenly-matched affair.
Yet Nadal began the match dialed in, scoring an early break against a tentative Thiem to open a 2-0 lead. The Austrian settled, and, much to the delight of the capacity crowd, broke back and eventually leveled scores at 2-2.
The remainder of the first set was a competitive, physical slug-fest until then 10th game when, trailing 4-5, Thiem sprayed errors and surrendered serve at love.
With the first set in his pocket, Nadal played even more purposefully and relentlessly, peppering Thiem’s one-handed backhand and breaking serve en route to a 3-0 lead.
Thiem was unable to claw it back, and in less than two hours, the Austrian trailed two sets to love.
With the sun emerging, Nadal continued to thrive, while Thiem immediately went down 0-40 in his first service game of the third and looked increasingly disheartened.
While he fought gamely and escaped for a hold at 1-0, Nadal promptly broke in the third game.
Then, in the fourth game, leading 30-0, Nadal served a fault and marched straight to his court-side seat, calling for the trainer. After flexing the middle finger on his left hand and having his left wrist taping removed, he proceeded to double fault but held serve for a 3-1 lead.
Apparently unhampered, Nadal proceeded to complete victory in two hours and 42 minutes.
With his Roland-Garros and US Open titles in 2017, Nadal has now won three of the past five Grand Slam tournaments and remains at world No.1.