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Rafael Nadal beats Dominic Thiem for his 11th French Open title

10 June 2018

This historical analysis doesn't lend itself to fancying Thiem's chances of denying Nadal an 11th French Open title this afternoon, and neither did my model pricing either.

King of Clay Rafael Nadal said he will have to be at his best to beat Dominic Thiem in Sunday's final at Roland Garros if he is to create more history and claim an 11th title.

The victory also allowed the 32-year-old Spaniard to hold onto the No. 1 ranking.

The number of Grand Slam finals now contested by Nadal, extending his position at second on the men's Open Era leaderboard, behind Federer (30) and ahead of Djokovic (21) and Lendl (19).

The No. 7-seeded Thiem, a 24-year-old from Austria, appeared in his first Grand Slam final. But after, the Spaniard was imperious.

Up a break at 2-1 in the third set, Nadal stopped serving after a fault because he couldn't straighten his left middle finger. At the following changeover, Nadal was given a salt pill by a doctor and had his left forearm massaged by a trainer.

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Come rain or shine, the passing of the years or a worrying attack of cramp in the hand, nothing seems to be able to stop Rafael Nadal at Roland Garros.

Katherine Lam is a breaking and trending news digital producer for Fox News. But from 4-all in the opening set, Nadal grabbed five games in a row and was in charge.

Nadal struck 26 winners to Thiem's 34 yet made only 24 unforced errors to Thiem's 42, with "unforced errors" a relative term in Nadal Roland Garros matches.

Nadal's Barcelona Open semifinal win over David Goffin was his 400th tour-level clay-court match win, making him the fourth man in the Open Era to win 400 matches on clay, after Vilas (659), Manuel Orantes (502) and Muster (422).

In a 10-minute second game of the second set, Thiem suffered more trauma.

"I am sure you will win here in the next couple of years", Nadal told Thiem afterward.

Rafael Nadal beats Dominic Thiem for his 11th French Open title