Rafael Nadal beats Norwegian Casper Ruud 6-3 6-3 6-0 and wins Roland Garros for the 14th time in his career. With today’s success, the Spaniard reaches 22 Grand Slam wins, reaching +2 on his all-time rivals, Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic with 20 wins. And at 36, after troubled seasons, he dismisses the rumors about his possible retirement, which had also spread just before the final on the ground more congenial to him: “I don’t know what will happen in the future but I will continue to try and fight as long as I have the strength” he says after the award ceremony, unleashing the roar of Philippe Chatrier. And then the thanks to the team and the family “without you I would have retired a long time ago”, says the Majorcan who then, to Eurosport’s microphones, talks about the problem in his right foot: “In Rome it was impossible to manage. The doctor was here in these two weeks: I play with an injection on the nerve, the foot falls asleep. How many injections have I had? I better not tell you … “.
Tennis: Nadal show in Paris, wins 14 / o Roland Garros
The final with Casper Ruud is practically without history. Nadal closes it with a backhand down the line and at 36 he becomes the oldest ever winner of Roland Garros. The Spaniard also breaks the record dthe Andres Gimeno champion fifty years ago. The final turned out to be, paradoxical as it may seem, the easiest match of the seven. Rafa completed the journey towards the fourteenth Parisian slam in as many finals by beating four Top 10s in seven games: Felix Auger-Aliassime (the third player to take him to the fifth set in Paris), Novak Djokovic, Alexander Zverev (who retired for the fall in the final of the second set which cost him the laceration of several ligaments in his right ankle) and precisely Ruud, the first Norwegian finalist ever in a Grand Slam.
With the victory in Paris Nadal celebrates the 22nd major in his career, detaching Djokovic and Federer in this ranking, who have 20 on their showcase. Ruud pays the emotion and suffers two breaks in the first three rounds of serving. The control of the game has Nadal who closes the first set 6-3. The second set opens with an unusual break that Nadal concedes with three double fouls (1-3), but Ruud’s efficient schematic is not enough to keep it up. The Spaniard picks up the thread of the match and hasn’t lost a game from that moment. Nadal’s domination at Roland Garros, which began in 2005 and continued for seventeen years in which he never even dropped out of the Top 10 in the ATP ranking for a week, is there for all to see. It is also under the eyes of Casper Ruud, who at thirteen was on the Chatrier as a fan to support Rafa, and since August 2018 he has chosen the Nadal Academy as his base. “Congratulations to Rafa, we all know what a champion you are. Today I felt what it means to play in the final against you, it wasn’t easy – Ruud said after the game, during the awards ceremony -. Thanks to you and your family, you let me into your academy with open arms. You are a great inspiration “.
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