News ID: 103356
Publish Date : 06 June 2022 - 21:47

PARIS (Reuters) - Rafael Nadal regained his aura of invincibility on clay on Sunday by brutally crushing Casper Ruud to lift the French Open trophy for an incredible 14th time and widen the gap at the top of the men’s all-time list of Grand Slam winners.
Norwegian Ruud became the latest victim in a long line of challengers who have unsuccessfully tried to defeat the Spaniard in the Roland Garros final since Nadal won his maiden title on the red clay in 2005.
There was a sense of deja vu as the Spaniard, who turned 36 on Friday, completed a 6-3 6-3 6-0 thrashing on a balmy afternoon in Paris to maintain his 100 percent success rate in the championship round at the claycourt major.
In the past 12 months Nadal contemplated retirement due to his battle with a chronic foot problem, was forced to spend six weeks on the sidelines after suffering a stress fracture on a rib in March and was unsure if he would be able to compete in Paris after struggling with his foot in Rome.
Rumors that the ‘king of clay’ was making his final appearance at Roland Garros kept circulating during the past fortnight.
“I don’t know what can happen in the future but I am going to keep fighting to try and keep going,” Nadal said in his victory speech on Court Philipp Chatrier, getting the afternoon’s biggest round of applause from the stands.
Despite all the trials and tribulations he suffered in the build-up, no one could prevent Nadal from lifting the Musketeers’ Cup for a record-extending 14th time. The win means Nadal is now halfway through the calendar Grand Slam for the first time in his career after also winning the year’s opening major at the Australian Open.

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