Rafael Nadal: I thought I would have retired by now


Nadal's 6-4, 6-3, 6-2 victory over Dominic Thiem, who's 24, in Sunday's final gave the Spaniard an 11th title - yes, 11th - at Roland Garros and 17th Grand Slam trophy overall.

French Santoro is a former singles six-time champion and former world No. 17, as well as a two-time Grand Slam men's doubles and Davis Cup champion.

Spain and Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos has led the social media acclaim for tennis star Rafael Nadal, after he won a record-extending 11th title at the French Open in Paris. His 11th title French Open deepened a Parisian habit both routine by now and unimaginable by anyone. Of those 86 victories, 78 have come when Nadal has won the first set, after which he has never lost a match on Parisian clay. And, of course, Nadal has owned the tournament that history will care about most: the French Open.

It's quite a different scene in the women's game these days.

"It's wonderful now, I can't describe my feelings", Nadal told the crowd on Philippe Chatrier Court moments after capturing his 17th Grand Slam trophy with a 6-4 6-3 6-2 victory.

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Unlike previous year - when those first few games realistically settled things - Thiem bounced back, breaking straight away.

Her coach Darren Cahill isn't anxious about getting Halep back on the court for the grass. It took her another three years to get a second opportunity, but it ended in heartbreak against an unseeded Ostapenko.

"We start to believe that anyone can win it", Halep said.

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"If you tell me seven, eight years ago that I will be here. having this trophy with me again, I will tell you that is something nearly impossible", Nadal said.

When he was recovering from injury this year, for the umpteenth time in his career, he was focused on this title and nothing - certainly not Dominic Thiem - was going to stand in his way.

Ten years ago, Nadal was already the King of Clay.

Nadal spent several months away from the tour after sustaining an injury at this years Australian Open and could, like Federer, decide that his long-term interests are best-served by sparing his body further punishment.

But at the moment, Murray is still recovering from a hip operation in January and his exact date for a return is unknown.

"Physically, I enjoyed (it) more watching him on the couch, " Thiem said with a smile.

So that leaves Federer and Nadal, healthy and talented as ever.

'I happy that other people have things, and I am very satisfied, and I feel very lucky with all the things that happened it me. "I did it in the past when I was much younger, quicker, because I played back to back".

And at Wimbledon, where play begins July 2, we'll find out whether Rafa and Roger can keep figuring out how to successfully "fight against the watch".