Nadal eyes 11th French Open as Thiem shrugs off expectations

Nadal eyes 11th French Open as Thiem shrugs off expectations

Nadal eyes 11th French Open as Thiem shrugs off expectations

His service to the sport has afforded him the right to conserve fuel for when he thinks it's best utilised, and unfortunately for Nadal, his participation at Wimbledon will likely impede others from getting at the men's silverware.

The clay-court specialist from Spain raced to a 6-4, 6-3, 6-2 victory in two hours and 42 minutes over his younger Austrian rival and first-time major finalist on a warm, humid Sunday afternoon in France's capital, Paris.

It was clay-court tennis as usual at Roland Garros on Sunday, as the Spaniard won his 11th French Open singles title.

Nadal has not lost at Roland Garros when taking the first set and that record did not look like coming under threat as he continually rebuffed Thiem's attempts to make inroads into his serve, taking the second courtesy of an early break.

On another day, if the result had been different in 1968, it might have been Laver in Paris presenting Nadal with the trophy.

"That's my biggest goal, to get into the next one and then to do it better than today", he said.

In his two matches against Nadal at the French Open, Thiem has not been able to win even a set.

His uncle thought wrapping around Nadal's left forearm was too tight.

Years ago, Rafael Nadal earned the nickname the "King of Clay" for a reason.

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Federer was on the receiving end of another major defeat as Nadal landed his first Wimbledon title - 9-7 in the fifth set and in near-darkness.

At 2-1 in the fourth set, Nadal stopped serving during a game because he couldn't straighten his left middle finger.

Nadal's 11th title takes his grand slam tally to 17 and even at 32, despite the miles in his legs, who is going to stop him making it 12 in a year's time?

Nadal's welling eyes during the trophy ceremony provided a moment of vulnerability after a match that had very few of them, apart from a weird interlude in the third set when Nadal abruptly stopped mid-service game with a disconcerted expression and left the baseline to request medical attention for a cramping left hand. Thiem was hammering every ball that he could, and Nadal was responding with his classic clay court defense. For most of his straight-set win over Dominic Thiem in the Roland Garros final, he did just that.

Beaten French Open finalist Dominic Thiem believes this won't be his only shot at Grand Slam glory.

The only hiccup was Thiem, his challenge on last legs, fighting off the first four championship points on Nadal's serve in the eighth game.

Unfortunately for him, Thiem began the second set the same way he ended the first.

He is now three grand slam titles short of Roger Federer, the pair having shared the past six slam titles between them.

Certainly, Nadal played a role. The Spaniard's 11th Monte Carlo title and his eighth Rome title were his 31st and 32nd Masters titles, respectively, breaking a tie with Djokovic, who has won 30.

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