The two great rivals meet at Roland Garros for the first time in eight years in Friday’s French Open semi-final. Match ends up witnessing an epic encounter, as Nadal Defeats Federer to Enter Record 12th French Open Final.
A remarkable game
As it was called as the most anticipated tennis match in years, Nadal outplayed Federer in every facet of the game Friday on Court Philippe Chatrier, where the Spaniard muscled, ran, retrieved and blasted his way to a 6-3, 6-4, 6-2 victory that sends him on to Sunday’s final and a chance to extend his record 11 French Open championships.
With the victory, under fiendishly windy conditions, Nadal snapped a five-match losing streak against Federer, improving his career record against the Swiss to 24-15. Nadal also pulled within one victory of what would be his 18th major, plausible striking distance from Federer’s record 20. He improved his record at the French Open to a staggering 92-2.
As it happened
The match got underway shortly after 1 p.m. here, following a morning rain that left gray skies and a 15-mph wind in its wake.
Federer, who was playing at Roland Garros for the first time since 2015, hadn’t lost a set through five victories over the past two weeks. With an aggressive, head-to-the-net style, he had been broken a total of only four times by those opponents.
Nadal easily exceeded that in a span of three sets across less than 2½ hours, winning 6 of 13 return games.
The 37-year-old Federer was serenaded off the court by spectators’ chants of his first name. He raised his right arm for a quick wave as he walked away – perhaps for the final time.
What a performance from Rafael Nadal!
The King of Clay beats Roger Federer 6-3 6-4 6-2 to reach the French Open final. pic.twitter.com/Ui0yBS25vi
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