Sports

Rafael Nadal claims 11th Barcelona Open title

Rafael Nadal claims 11th Barcelona Open title

The title is his 11th career singles title in Barcelona.

Speaking after his win yesterday, Nadal said: "I'm very happy for the victory against a very hard opponent". I'm just enjoying every week and the fact I'm playing in a tournament that I enjoy so much means a lot to me.

Nadal is already an icon at his backyard and so befitting, the center court in Barcelona is named after him-The Pista Rafael Nadal.

"Tsitsipas has an unbelievable future".

"It's very hard to describe how to win 11 titles at one tournament".

"It's very hard to describe how to win 11 titles at one tournament".

"I had watched him a lot but in reality it's not like (watching him) on television. I really appreciate the support and hope it will happen for many more years".

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A typically aggressive Nadal ramped up the pressure with an onslaught of powerful groundstrokes and broke to love for a second time for a 4-1 lead when a toiling Tsitsipas drilled a forehand wide.

World No 1 Rafael Nadal celebrated his 11th Barcelona Open title by taking a dip in a swimming pool.

The last Greek to make an ATP final was Nicholas Kalogeropoulos, in Des Moines back in 1973.

Nadal's 77th title tied him with John McEnroe, trailing only Jimmy Connors, Roger Federer and Ivan Lendl.

Tsitsipas, though he was outmatched in the final, showed his fair share of flair in the tournament as well, complementing his ball-popping power with delicate drop shots.

"It's hard for anybody to imagine all the feelings and emotions I have when I play here", Nadal said. "It was a first experience and tougher than I thought". The Spaniard has been in top form throughout the tournament and seems to be in great shape heading towards the 2018 French Open, which gets underway in earnest on May 27.

"I have seen millions of Rafa's clay matches on TV - I have been preparing for this match for 10 years", joked the young Greek.


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