Rafael Nadal Wins His 11th French Open

Nadal defeated Austrian Dominic Thiem in straight sets.

Rafael Nadal has won his 11th title at the 2018 French Open, defeating 24-year-old Austrian player Dominic Thiem in straight sets. (This was Thiem’s first grand slam final, though he beat Nadal at last year’s Italian Open and won the pair’s most recent meeting at the Madrid Open last month. He also beat Nadal in Buenos Aires in 2016.)

It was an exciting matchup, with humid conditions and a 57-minute first set, though for close watchers of the 32-year-old Nadal—who has become known as something close to unbeatable on clay—the conclusion was rarely in question. The Spanish player was in complete control for most of the match, save for some cramping in his left wrist during the third set. “I’m very happy with the match, very pleased today,” Nadal said after the match, switching between French and English. “[Thiem] played great, I’m happy, he’s a good friend, one of these players that the tour needs, I’m sure that he’ll be here for the next couple of years.” With this win, Nadal joins the exclusive club of players who have garnered over $100 million in career earnings. But after the match money seemed far from Nadal’s mind: “[To play against] a player that pushes you to the limit, it’s amazing,” he said. “I can’t describe my feelings, because it’s not even a dream that we’re here for the 11th time, it’s impossible to think something like this.”

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