US Open 2017: Majestic Rafael Nadal humbles Kevin Anderson to claim 16th Grand Slam title

Nadal thus added a third US Open trophy from New York. He had previously won the Flushing Meadows event in 2010 and 2013, to successfully counter the view that he only thrives on the dirts of Paris.

By Zee Media Bureau | Last Updated: Sep 11, 2017, 06:13 AM IST
US Open 2017: Majestic Rafael Nadal humbles Kevin Anderson to claim 16th Grand Slam title
Courtesy: Twitter

New Delhi: World number one Rafael Nadal captured his third US Open title and 16th Grand Slam crown early Monday morning with a disciplined performance over big-serving South American Kevin Anderson at the Arthur Ashe Stadium, New York. (As it happened)

Played under the shadow of looming Hurricane Irma, which just hit Florida in the same East Coast region of the United States, the start of the match was delayed like in previous day's Women's Singles final. It was untypical of a Grand Slam final, but once the balls get rolling, the 31-year-old Spaniard took over and treated the capcity crowd with some exemplary tennis.

And he mentioned about the hardships people are facing in the wake of hurricane Irma in most delicate way. "I just want to say sorry for all the victims and keep going for everybody," Nadal said during the trophy presentation.

"It`s very sad moments for our world but keep fighting to come back," added Nadal.

He won the match 6-3, 6-3, 6-4 in little less than two and half hours, which is the longest for a straight sets final.

Nadal thus added a third US Open trophy from New York. He had previously won the Flushing Meadows event in 2010 and 2013, to successfully counter the view that he only thrives on the dirts of Paris.

Today's hard court win will give the 31-year-old more than enough confidence to plan for his future, with a target to become the most successfull player in the Open Era.

His eternal rival Roger Federer has a record 19 Grand Slam title. Federer himself won the season`s other two Slams at the Australian Open, beating Nadal in the final, and Wimbledon.

With the eminnent return of Novak Djokovic and Andy Murry next season, the Big Four will once again constitutes the soul of male tennis. The Swiss maeastro still in good shape and showing enough appetite of Grand Slams, while well rested Djokovic and Murray will bring Nadal the true test. And it's foundation was laid today.

Playing in his first ever Grand Slam final in 34th attempt, the world number 32 from South Africa seemed to have over-rawed by the occassion.

He became the first South African in a US championship final since Cliff Drysdale in 1965 and was bidding to become his country`s first Slam champion since Johan Kriek at the 1981 Australian Open.

Despite his far reaching reputation of a hard fighter, the 31-year-old committed as many as 40 unforced errors to Nadal`s 11. But even more worrying point was, he failed to create even one single break point chance.

Despite the one-sided scoreline of 6-3 in favour of the Spaniard in the first set, Anderson hung on to force something out of his maiden Major final. But, once that 59 minute long slugfest was over, it became Nadal's story, where he dictated every turn of the game.

The first set itself witnessed two break of serves after going smoothly for Anderson for some time. He lost the serve in the seventh and ninth games to concede 3-6 a defeat.

The second and third set needed a break each. Nadal broke Anderson in the sixth game in the second set, then started the all-important third set with another break. The second and third sets lasted 40 and 51 minutes respectively.

Such was the difference in the clash that Anderson was broken just five times in the entire tournament, but in space of two and half hours today, he lost as many as four serves.

For Nadal, it was his fifth title of the year and 74th of his career while the $3.7 million (3.07 euros) winner`s prize boosted his earnings to a shade under $90 million.