Rafael Nadal Lifts Record 11th French Open Title

Jun 10 2018 Paris France Rafael Nadal poses with the trophy after his men's singles final against Dominic Thiem on day 15

Jun 10 2018 Paris France Rafael Nadal poses with the trophy after his men's singles final against Dominic Thiem on day 15

Victory at Roland Garros on Sunday proved memorable for Rafael Nadal, with the Spaniard securing his 11th success at the French Open, although he's since made clear that he was bothered by hand cramps in the third set which alarmed him due to the humidity.

Rafael Nadal won his record 11th French Open over the weekend, and he took home the same paycheck as women's champion Simona Halep.

Nadal coasts to a record 10th French Open title, demolishing Wawrinka in a brutally one-sided final which also earns the Spaniard a 15th Grand Slam crown. It was very humid and he pushed me to the limit. "Incredible", Federer said of Nadal's victory.

A Wimbledon win for Nadal would put him on 18 Grand Slams and just two behind Federer as the pair's rivalry shows no sign of ending anytime soon despite both players heading towards the end of their career.

"I came back from five months without playing a full tournament".

Nadal has won six of his nine matches against Thiem, all of them coming on that famously hard red clay. He is, however, the second player overall to win a major 11 times after Australia's Margaret Court, who won four of her 11 Australian Open titles after the start of the Open Era in 1968.

"You can win a set, but not a match against Rafa", said Del Potro keen not to over-egg any hint of weakness in Nadal's game. "He's won seven times at Wimbledon so he'll definitely be up there as one of the favourites, but you never know; it depends a little bit on the draw".

There have, however, appeared to be one or two chinks in Nadal's armour at Roland Garros this year. No, no, no, I can't - I can't be always thinking of more.

"I think it was the first time against him here in Roland Garros where it was a fight", Thiem said.

"Not that I did that past year, but on grass margins are very slim and it's not so simple, especially when you haven't played for three months". "So I hope to see you all again next year".

Nadal spent several months away from the tour after sustaining an injury at this years Australian Open and could, like Federer, decide that his long-term interests are best-served by sparing his body further punishment. Such is his motivation to win his 17th Grand Slam on Sunday, that the task facing Austrian 24-year-old Thiem was described as "almost impossible" by Del Potro.

"No, you can't be frustrated always if somebody have more money than you, if somebody have a bigger house than you, if somebody have more grand slams than you".

Yet Nadal also knows he could be a threat after playing impressively a year ago before falling in the last 16, losing a classic tussle against Luxembourg's Gilles Muller.

He led by two sets plus a break early in the third when the middle finger on his racket-wielding left hand was cramping so badly he couldn't straighten it.

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