Even the main Court Philippe Chatrier, where Rafael Nadal won his 12th French Open singles title on Sunday, was reconstructed in the past year. The Spaniard was cheered mightily afterward by the ball kids crew, who were also on hand for the photo ceremony with him and his trophy.
Just like in 2005 and 2006, Roger was able to take a set out of Rafa in 2007 final that took place on June 10 but it wasn't enough for an overall win, with Nadal celebrating a 6-3, 4-6, 6-3, 6-4 triumph in three hours and 10 minutes (2006 final lasted for more than three hours as well) for his third straight Roland Garros crown.
Second ranked Rafael Nadal of Spain won his 12th French Open and 18th major title on Sunday when he beat the fourth ranked Dominic Thiem of Austria 6-3, 5-7, 6-1, 6-1 in the men's singles final. In the first game - interrupted briefly by a baby wailing in the stands, drawing a laugh from spectators and prompting Nadal to back away from the baseline between serves - three of the five points lasted at least 11 strokes. It was impossible to hold that thing during the whole match.
"I will try my best next year again".
He added: "All the things that I went through probably give me that extra passion when I am playing, because I know I will not be here forever". I was feeling so happy, with such a good win, and today, of course, I lost.
Federer, who will be 38 in August, played dazzling tennis to reach the semi-final before Nadal and a Parisian gale did for his hopes of a record-extending 21st Grand Slam title.
Federer managed to outplay Nadal in the winners department although that proved not to be enough, spraying nearly 60 unforced errors and missing a chance to at least force the fifth set and push Rafa to the limits. "I feel sorry as he deserves to win it as well", said Nadal. He won it 12 times. Speaking about his injuries, he said: "I lost, I think, around 15 or even more Grand Slams in my career for injuries". On Sunday, though, as Nadal once more took a bite out of the Coupe des Mousquetaires, it was as if his 12th title in Paris was never in doubt.
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"Already the 20-year-old Novak was very, very good", said the German. "Thinking a lot, finally I think I was able to change and was able to fight back for every small improvement that I was able to make that happen".
Nadal's 18th Grand Slam title means he is now just two behind Federer at the top of the all-time list - more motivation, if he needs it, to keep going and keep fighting. He said: "You can't be frustrated all the time because the neighbour has a bigger house than you, or a bigger TV or a better garden".
"Mentally, I wasn't enjoying myself. If not, for me, still unbelievable", Nadal said. So I don't see the life. "Eternal legend of Roland Garros".
He started to right himself by taking the Italian Open title on clay last month.
Rafael Nadal says he will again not play any warmup tournaments before Wimbledon.
"It was very important for him to win in Rome".