Spain’s Rafael Nadal on Sunday easily overcame Russian up-and-comer Danil Medvedev 6-3, 6-0 in blustery conditions to gain his fifth title at the final of the Rogers Cup in Montreal and the 35th ATP Masters 1000 title of his career.
Nadal, who was defending the title he won last year in Toronto, needed just 70 minutes to add a fifth Canadian title to his resume. Medvedev started strong and in their first game, the two were showing off baseline rallies of 24 and 32 shots. But Medvedev, who had never before faced off against the 18-time Grand Slam champion, could not keep up.
Nadal needed 40 minutes to win the first set, but then raced through the second.
“He played a great game, some very long rallies. For me, personally, it was important to start the match in good shape. He came to that match playing so well, playing a lot of matches. For me, it was a different story. I only played three matches on hard before this one,” Nadal said after the match.
Medvedev, who was champion in Sofia this year and finalist in Washington, Barcelona and Brisbane, realized he was performing far below the level he had shown in these tournaments.
“My tactic was to not give him that much time, to try to play deep, to not give him easy shots. It was kind of working at the beginning of the match, but then I completely lost the momentum. It was only him controlling the play, controlling the game,” Medvedev said after the match.
It was the first time the Russian had reached the final of an ATP Masters 1000 – without dropping a single set throughout the tournament – but in the end, he was overwhelmed by the pressure and experience of his opponent.
Nadal's win in Canada comes on the heels of him clinching the Rome Masters 1000 and the Roland Garros trophies this year.
The 83rd title in the Spaniard's career underpins his fitness in the run-up to the US Open in Flushing Meadows set to begin at the end of August, the last Grand Slam of the season. EFE-EPA