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Nadal beats Thiem in Madrid, wins 3rd straight title

16 Mai 2017

The victory is expected to boost Nadal to No. 4 in the ATP world rankings. "What I know for sure is that I'm doing my very best to rediscover myself in a new way and get the new strength and the new skin, so to speak", the 12-time Grand Slam victor explained.

Dominic Thiem set up a Madrid Open final showdown with Rafael Nadal as the Austrian ended the charge of Pablo Cuevas.

Rafael Nadal has won the Madrid Open after a grueling encounter with Dominic Thiem.

Nadal also has a superb record in Rome, winning six of the last 10 years events.

“These last few weeks have been very special.

Nadal had to stave off a break point on his own serve to consolidate the break for 2-0.

The first set went to a tie break in which Nadal always looked to be on top, but it was not until the fifth time of asking that he was able to win the decisive point.

Both players were producing some brilliant winners but Nadal eventually took the breaker 10-8 when Thiem's usually trusty forehand flew just long to end a set which had lasted nearly an hour and a half. I think then the match was more even.

"I can not promise to play or pull out right now", he said. "After that I went for it".

It was clear from the pair's respective entrances that Thiem would be fighting the Madrid crowd as well as Nadal on Sunday, with the Magic Box bellowing for the latter while his Austrian foe hardly produced a cheer.

"It was a good fight out there". But in December or January, I was not expecting to play badly, because I knew I was doing a very good off-season.

Djokovic's straight sets win in that encounter meant he had won his last 15 sets stretching back to the 2014 French Open final against the 14-time Grand Slam champion.

Federer may not be the best clay court player, but with some good rest behind him his current form will make him one of the favourites in the French Open.

The 30-year-old Spaniard had spanned a losing streak against Djokovic when he beat the Serbian in the semifinal and was a heavy favourite to beat the up-and-coming Thiem in the final on his favourite surface, clay.

Murray won his only title of the year in Dubai and had started the clay season trying to regain his form following a right elbow injury that kept him out of the Miami Open and the Davis Cup quarterfinals.

Rafael Nadal recorded a first win over Novak Djokovic in nearly three years to seal a place in the Madrid Open final. "We have taken plenty of titles from each other", Nadal added.

"This is a very emotional period of the season", Nadal told reporters.

"Today is a day to be satisfied, to be happy and to have this trophy", Nadal said after winning in his homeland. The second set I was a little bit more nervous. "I hope to do the same in Rome (in this week's Italian Open)".

Nadal beats Thiem in Madrid, wins 3rd straight title