Rafael Nadal beat Novak Djokovic 6-4, 5-7, 6-4, 6-2 in the US Open final to confirm himself in the Tennis hall of fame with his first US open win and a career Grand Slam. At the age of 24 Nadal stands as the 7th Tennis player in the history of the game to hold all four major titles; Wimbledon, the French, Australian and US Opens. He joins the Tennis World’s greats such as Fred Perry, Don Budge, Rod Laver, Roy Emerson, Andre Agassi and his greatest rival Roger Federer. On 9 slams, with youth on his side and Federer giving signs of waning from his glory days there is every chance of Nadal exceeding his rival’s current record of 16. Nadal is the first man since Laver in 1969 to win The French Open, Wimbledon and the US Open all in the same year.
In victory he was ever humble, congratulating his opponent, saying “You’re a great player, you’re going to win this trophy very soon, I’m sure of that.” Before receiving his trophy a smiling Nadal said the triumph was “more than what I dreamt”.
Nadal reached the final without dropping a set but expectations of a straightforward win were denied. Djokovic proved a tough and ambitious opponent and Nadal did not have a perfect game by any stretch of the imagination; converting only 6 of 23 break points to his opponents 3 of 4. Djokovic attained spectacular form after a break for rain but could not hold on. His tough road to the final, through the formidable obstacle of Federer, began to take its toll on the Serb in the final set. 3 hours and 42 minutes after its start Djokovic sent a forehand long and Nadal fell to his knees in celebration.
Image courtesy of http://www.guardian.co.uk/sport/2010/sep/14/rafael-nadal-wins-us-open