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Nadal ends smoothly with Federer

Nadal ends smoothly with Federer

The Spanish Rafael Nadal cherishes the dream of his twelfth title at Roland Garros after beating the Swiss Roger Federer in a duel of tennis legends in just three sets, 6-3, 6-4 and 6-2, this in the first semifinal .

In Sunday’s grand final, Nadal will face Serbian world number one Novak Djokovic or Austrian Dominic Thiem, fourth in the ATP rankings and who lost last year’s final in Paris to the Mallorcan.

“Roger is incredible, playing at this level at 37 years old … He is a player who is probably the best in history and for me it is a pleasure to play against him,” Nadal declared in his first words on the court, speaking in French.

«It was a difficult match. It always is against Roger. Today it was also because of the very strong wind. But I’m happy, going back to the Roland Garros final is very special, in the most important tournament of my career, “he said.

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It will be the twelfth time that Nadal has played the final at Roland Garros and in the previous eleven he managed to lift the Musketeers Cup. If he succeeds on Sunday, he will enlarge his legend by being the first in tennis to win the same Grand Slam tournament twelve times, leaving behind the equality of eleven he has with the legendary Margaret Court, who won that number of titles at the Open. from Australia, your country.

In Grand Slam dates, Nadal will play his 26th final. He won seventeen of the previous twenty-five, the last one last year at Roland Garros, since in January he clearly lost the one he played in Australia against Djokovic.

It had been more than five years since Nadal had beaten Federer a match, exactly since the semifinals of the Australian Open in 2014.

In his last five meetings the Swiss had won, a figure that increases to six if you count the loss of Nadal before playing this year’s semifinal in Indian Wells.

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But on clay and at Roland Garros, everything changes for Nadal.

There are now six times they have met on Parisian clay and the Spanish has won all six, including four finals (2006, 2007, 2008 and 2011).

– No option –

In the duel this Friday, threatened by a rain forecast that was not fulfilled and which was witnessed in the stands by the famous Spanish film director Pedro Almodóvar, Nadal came out brilliantly, with a ‘break’ at the first exchange to distance themselves 3-0 in the first set.

Federer managed to break the Spaniard’s serve to get closer to 3-2, but Nadal returned the ‘break’ in the next game, went 4-2 and thus laid the foundations to take the set 6-3.

In the second, Federer seemed to react by going 2-0 up as a new service break from his rival, but Nadal also did not take long to put out the small fire, he broke the serve of the Swiss right after and then repeated to get 5-4 and service, which was not wasted to close that sleeve 6-4.

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With everything going for him, the third was a real ride for Nadal, who with two more breaks sealed a resounding victory with a 6-2 run, winning in 2 hours and 25 minutes.

Federer has not defeated Nadal on clay for more than a decade, when he beat him in the 2009 Madrid Masters 1000 final.

In the history of direct confrontations, Nadal now dominates his mythical rival by 24 victories to 15, an even more forceful figure in the clashes on clay, which is now 14-2.

Federer ends his adventure in these semifinals on his return to Roland Garros after four years without participating in the tournament in the French capital.

Nadal, however, will have a new appointment with history on Sunday. AFP

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