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Undaunted and Unbeaten on Clay, Nadal Claims Madrid Title
20 May 2017, 03:42 | Charlene Valdez
Nadal told Television Espanola: "The truth is I was up against an opponent who, in the next five to 10 years, will be fighting for the most important titles, so I'm very happy to have won".
Nadal is now on an unbeaten run of 14 matches and is looking to win his fifth title here at Madrid while Thiem is looking to win his second title of the year. To break that means there are always nerves.
But the Spaniard, buoyed by his belief and eager to avoid a third set, would earn two more championship points, converting the fourth with a backhand volley victor.
Nadal's current title streak began with victories at Monte Carlo and Barcelona last month.
"I am aware that if I am fit and I can play well, I have the capacity to win important titles and achieve my goals", said Nadal.
"I am humble enough to come here and say that I was nervous", said Nadal.
The victory also moves Nadal above Roger Federer to fourth in the world rankings.
Nadal, a four-time victor in the Spanish capital, will prove a much sterner examination following his stunning straight-sets success over holder Novak Djokovic. Nadal is by far the best clay court player of all time, and he's dominated the surface in a way that no other player has dominated any other surface.
The Spaniard stormed into a 4-0 lead in the first set before Djokovic finally got on the board, but he had little answer as the left-hander comfortably wrapped up the opener. "I will try to improve the things I didn't do that good in Barcelona and then we will see what happens".
Regarding today's game, he was realistic, saying that Nadal didn't allow him to play better, although he had many unforced errors. If Nadal were to prevail at Roland Garros, he will become the first player in history to win a Grand Slam tournament on ten occasions.
Nadal's superiority, on top of Federer's three titles in the 2017's biggest hard-court events to date, supports the curious impression that men's tennis is stuck in a 10-year timewarp.
Despite the loss, Cuevas can be pleased with reaching his first Masters 1000 semi-final.
"This is a very emotional period of the season". I think what is logical is to go to Rome, try to give 100 per cent.
Record-tying 30th Masters crown, shared with Novak Djokovic.
Early signs weren't good for Thiem after a break between sets as he surrendered his serve at the first time of asking, and despite keeping his enemy stuck to his own baseline at times, the Spanish native spun the fixture in his favour.
Indeed Djokovic could only muster four points in the opening four games as Nadal raced into a 4-0 lead.
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