Rafael Nadal beats Kei Nishikori to land 11th Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters

Annette Crawford
April 23, 2018

The 31-year-old Spaniard won 6-3, 6-2 in 94 minutes at the Monte Carlo Country Club to claim a record-extending 11th triumph at the clay-court event. His win also gives him a record 31 Masters Series titles, one ahead of Novak Djokovic. To have the victory in a Masters 1000, especially in Monte-Carlo, that for me is one of the most important ones in terms of personal feeling and in terms of history of our sport.

"It's something that I am not anxious about, but it's a real thing".

"My goal is always the same thing - to be healthy, because if I am not healthy, I can not have any goals".

"I really don't know how these things can happen because it's a lot of years without making mistakes and without being unlucky on this week (in Monte Carlo)".

Nadal has not dropped a set in seven matches since coming back from a recurrence of a right hip injury that forced him to abandon during the fifth set of his Australian Open quarterfinal against Marin Cilic. "So I'm just enjoying every day and trying to play with the best attitude possible, to keep being happy playing tennis".

The 16-time Grand Slam champion's era of utter dominance on clay looks unlikely to end any time soon after Nadal took his run of consecutive sets won on clay to 36. 11 titles in Monte Carlo - an incredible result, it is hard to imagine.

He got some brief hope, breaking Nadal with a superb passing shot at full stretch to lead 2-1, but meekly surrendered the next four games.

Nadal though quashed doubts over his fitness with a dominant display on clay-court last week at the Principality. The greatest player to ever step foot on a clay court secured his 24th Masters title on the surface with a venomous backhand that flew past the hapless Nishikori.

He has his sights firmly set on an 11th title at Barcelona next week and then an 11th French Open title at Roland Garros.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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