Rafael Nadal Defeats Casper Ruud To Win His 22ND Grand Slam Title at Paris

Prateek Dasgupta

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Rafael Nadal at the French OpenWikimedia Commons

Rafael Nadal defeated 8th seeded Casper Ruud of Norway in straight sets 6-3,6-3,6-0 to win an incredible 14th French open and his 22nd Grand Slam. The Norwegian Ruud had never made past the fourth round of a glad slam but was impressive at Roland Garros reaching the finals.

Ruud’s outstanding run came to a stop against the record-breaking Rafael Nadal, who became the oldest professional to win a French Open at 36. Nadal, dubbed as the king of clay, won the last 11 games of the match to seal his 14th French Open title.

Nadal has now won both the Grand Slams of the year, following up on his impressive comeback win in the Australian Open against Daniil Medvedev.

Since his first triumph at 19, Nadal has won the French Open fourteen times. He has lost only three matches since then, winning 14 out of the 17 times he played at the prestigious event in Paris.

Nadal had a tough draw at Paris and overcame the world no 1 Novak Djoković in the quarterfinals. In the semis he faced an impressive Alexander Zverev. The match was evenly poised, with Rafa taking the first set 7-6 and the second set heading to tie break, before a horrific injury forced Zverev to retire.

For me personally, very difficult to describe the feelings that I have," he said after Sunday's win. "It's something that I for sure didn't believe, that I'd be here, at 36, being competitive again. Playing in the most important court of my career one more time in a final means a lot to me, it means everything. - Rafael Nadal

Earlier Nadal had hinted at retirement saying his body could give up at any moment, but after the French Open triumph Rafa has a change of mind indicating he will keep on playing as long as he can.

I don't know what can happen in the future but I'm going to keep fighting to try to keep going.- Rafael Nadal

A career ridden with injuries has seen Nadal withdraw from many a tournament or play with injuries. A chronic injury in his left foot flared up recently, which was bothering the player. The player took anesthesia to continue playing and told Eurosport that he had “no feeling in his foot.”

Nadal's next challenge will be the prestigious Wimbledon trophy which starts on 27th June.

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As a writer, lost civilizations and human progress fascinate me. My goal on News Break is to spark people's interest in the past, archaeology, natural history, and the history of scientific inquiry.

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