Rafael Nadal beat Swiss Stan Wawrinka 6-2 6-3 6-1 to win his 10th French Open title on Sunday, creating and shattering a number of records on his way to a rousing victory.
The 31-year-old said he was motivated by those who constantly spoke of the end of his career, and the win was a fitting reminder to critics who thought he was done.
Nadal is now just three Grand Slams away from equalling Roger Federer’s record of 18 majors, and while he still has a long way to go, his class on clay simply cannot be questioned.
Here are 10 stats that are a true testament to the fact that he is the one and only King of Clay.
– It was a dream debut for Nadal at Roland Garros when he won the French Open in 2005. A year later, he beat Roger Federer in the final for his second title. This was just the kickstart to a phenomenal career.
– In 2007, he became the first man since Bjorn Borg in 1980 to win a hat-trick of Roland Garros titles. By this time, he was already on his way to sealing his legacy as the King of Clay.
– 10 years after that record in 2007, Nadal became the first player in the Open Era to lift 10 titles at a grand slam tournament. It was a long wait, but when it finally came, it was truly special.
10 – @RafaelNadal‘s record in Roland-Garros finals :2005 🏆2006 🏆2007 🏆2008 🏆2010 🏆2011 🏆2012 🏆2013 🏆2014 🏆2017 🏆Invincible. pic.twitter.com/QwV42ZJF9q— OptaJean (@OptaJean) June 11, 2017
– Nadal has won 15 majors. 10 of those are French Opens. That means a staggering 66.66% of his majors have come on clay.
– With his win against Wawrinka in the final, Nadal extended his match wins tally to a 43-6 record, including a 24-1 stretch on clay.
– He took his record at Roland Garros to 79-2.
– His overall record in best-of-five matches on red clay is now 102-2. Almost unbeatable.
– Nadal dropped just 35 games in his seven matches at this year’s French Open.
– The Spaniard bagged his 53rd clay court title, four more than Argentine great Guillermo Vilas.
– He didn’t just win his 10th French Open title this year, he also won his 10th Monte Carlo and Barcelona Opens. What a year.