Nadal wins sixth Barca Open title

The clay court king continues his inspired run of form with 6-2, 6-4 win over David Ferrer.

    Nadal looks in blistering form ahead of the French Open next month [AFP]

    World number one Rafael Nadal beat compatriot David Ferrer in their second all-Spanish final in two weeks to clinch his sixth Barcelona Open title on Sunday.

    Nadal overpowered Ferrer 6-2, 6-4 to claim his 29th straight match at the clay court event, following up his victory over Ferrer in last week's Monte Carlo Masters final.

    Nadal breezed to victory in one hour, 49 minutes, and the result puts Nadal into third place on the all-time clay court trophy list with 31 career titles.

    Only Guillermo Vilas, with 45, and Thomas Muster, who won 40, are above him

    Barcelona favourite

    Nadal triumphed at Barcelona from 2005-09, including finals victories over Ferrer in the 2008 and '09, before sitting out the last year's tournament due to injury.

    "It's incredible to come back here to my tournament and my fans after not being able to play last year," Nadal said in an interview with Spanish television before hoisting aloft the huge Conde de Godo trophy.

    "I am very, very happy for the win and sorry for David, who is having a fantastic year and deserves a title," he added.

    "It's bad luck for him having to play me in three finals but it's my sixth title here and it's a huge delight."

    Both players struggled to hold their serve in a match that saw six breaks for Nadal and three for Ferrer.

    Ferrer held his first service game with an excellent drop shot and had a break point in the second, but Nadal rallied to save.

    Ferrer then began to lose the precision that had led him to wins over the seeded Jurgen Melzer and Nicolas Almagro in the early rounds.

    Nadal broke Ferrer's serve in the third with a forehand drive down the line, and didn't drop a point in Ferrer's next service game for his second break to go up 4-1.

    Ferrer broke back when Nadal erred on his backhand slice in the sixth game, but Ferrer netted an approach shot to surrender the advantage for Nadal to comfortably take the first set.

    Nadal hit another of his patented left-hand drives into the corner to break Ferrer in the first game of the second set, but Ferrer began to show some of the fight from Monte Carlo when he tested Nadal before falling 6-4, 7-5.

    Break point

    Ferrer saved a break point to hold in the third game, and took Nadal's serve when he forced Nadal to return long in the fourth, pulling even 2-2.

    As Ferrer reduced his errors, Nadal's volleys started to drift wide and he was broken for a second straight game when Ferrer's forehand winner gave him a 4-2 lead.

    But Nadal responded, swatting Ferrer's drop shot to break him in the seventh game, and he broke his opponent again in his next service game when Ferrer's cross shot landed wide to regain the lead for good

    The reigning French Open champion has now won 34 consecutive clay court matches dating back to a fourth-round loss to Robin Soderling at Roland Garros in 2009.

    In Stuttgart, rank outsider Julia Goerges of Germany stunned world number one Caroline Wozniacki 7-6 6-3 on Sunday to win her first title of the year in front of an ecstatic home crowd.

    Goerges outplayed her opponent, winner of three titles already this year, on the fast indoor clay court, giving the Dane no chance of a title she has yet to win.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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