Rafael Nadal vs Dominic Thiem, French Open 2018 men's final

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World number one Rafael Nadal won an 11th French Open title by beating Austria's Dominic Thiem in straight sets.

Dominic Thiem remembers sitting in front of a TV to follow along as Rafael Nadal made his Grand Slam final debut and won his first French Open title back in 2005.

Rafael Nadal "could never dream of" winning 11 French Open titles.

Thiem says he is "confident" his first appearance in a Grand Slam final will not be his last.

The victory means that Nadal now has 17 major titles, leaving him just three short of Roger Federer.

Sharapova had a similar story, working her way past Richel Hogenkamp and Donna Vekic before finding her feet against Karolina Pliskova with a 6-2 6-1 victory.

On a humid afternoon before a crowd peppered with celebrities from Zinedine Zidane to Hugh Grant he hardly showed signs of weakness, breaking immediately as his opponent got to grips with being in what was his first Grand Slam final. "And, of course, it was not nice to lose the first set, but still it was not a key point of today".

In a 10-minute second game of the second set, Thiem suffered more trauma. Thiem looks like he belongs on the big stage - but will he take that confidence into a showdown against Nadal who has only ever lost twice on the big Philippe Chatrier Court?

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Nadal won his sixth French Open title by defeating Federer once more in Paris. The two players were going for heavy, lung-busting shots.

Nadal needed five match points in a tense final game, eventually completing the job when Thiem fired a backhand long.

Nadal did not play for more than two months after the Australian Open in January - where he withdrew from his quarter-final against Marin Cilic because of a hip injury. This season no other player, not even the undisputed King of Clay, can count as many match wins on the red dirt as Thiem.

Is Nadal upset to still be trailing Federer by three slams, despite his phenomenal feats over the past year?

Nadal's welling eyes during the trophy ceremony provided a moment of vulnerability after a match that had very few of them, apart from a freakish interlude in the third set when Nadal abruptly stopped mid-service game with a disconcerted expression and left the baseline to request medical attention for a cramping left hand.

There was still fight in Thiem, though, and he had a break point when Nadal served at 4-2 ― a game in which the Spaniard was warned for taking too long to serve. Now, six Slams later, Federer still keeps his lead at three.

"For me [it] was scary, because I felt that I was not able to move the hand, the finger", Nadal said.

Understandably, Thiem looked edgy as the match begun and he managed to win only one of the first eight points as Nadal, cheered loudly when he walked on court, bristled with intent.

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