Rafael Nadal's last 10 ATP finals

Sport360 staff 25/04/2016
Rafael Nadal's last 10 finals have come on three different continents.

Rafael Nadal equalled Argentine legend Guillermo Vilas’s record of 49 clay-court titles with his ninth Barcelona Open after overcoming defending champion Kei Nishikori 6-4, 7-5 on Sunday.

Fresh from winning the Monte Carlo Masters last week, Nadal has now won his opening 10 matches of the European clay-court season ahead of his quest to land a record 10th French Open in June.

Nishikori was left to rue a series of missed break-point opportunities as the Japanese’s 14-match winning streak in Barcelona came to an end.

Nishikori had made the most of shock Nadal defeats to claim the title in the past two years, but despite some stiff resistence in just over two hours on court he slipped to a ninth defeat in 10 matches against the 14-time Grand Slam champion.

Nishikori started brightly, but produced an error-strewn game to hand Nadal the early break for 3-1 in the first set.

And another wayward game from Nishikori handed Nadal the break he needed to seal the set 6-4.

Nishikori did manage to break at the first opportunity in the second set, but this time Nadal responded with his best tennis of the match to surge to within two games of victory at 4-1.

Yet, a topsy-turvy final had another twist as an inspired Nishikori’s range of depth and well-timed drop shots saw him break back to level at 4-4.

Nadal missed out on his first match point at 5-4, but didn’t have to wait long as Nishikori offered up two more in his next service game and sealed his own fate when a forehand found the net.

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Top two seeds Rafael Nadal and Kei Nishikori to face each other in Barcelona Open final

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Nadal continued his perfect start to the European clay-court season having won the Monte Carlo Masters last week with a 6-3, 6-3 win over Philipp Kohlschreiber.

The 14-time Grand Slam champion is now just one win away from matching Argentine legend Guillermo Vilas’s record of 49 clay-court titles.

However, Nadal will have to end Nishikori’s hot-streak of 14 consecutive wins in Barcelona as he swept aside French sixth seed Benoit Paire 6-3, 6-2.











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VIDEO: Andy Murray relationship with Novak Djokovic good despite differing doping views

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Murray and Djokovic are good friend off of the court.

The world number two has called for more testing in the sport while 11-time Grand Slam winner Djokovic recently stated the game is clean until proven otherwise.

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