Rafael Nadal became the oldest title winner in the history of the clay-court competition when he won French Open two days after his 36th birthday.
Rafael Nadal won the French Open final on Sunday, defeating Casper Ruud 6-3, 6-3, 6-0 for his 14th victory at Roland Garros and 22nd Grand Slam trophy overall, adding to his two previous titles.
Nadal’s victory came two days after his 36th birthday, making him the clay-court tournament’s oldest champion ever.
In the second set, Ruud led 3-1, prompting Nadal to step up his game, winning the final 11 games.
At the age of 19, the Spaniard won his maiden Paris victory in 2005. No man or woman has ever won the singles trophy at a major tournament as many times as he did in Paris. Nadal also holds the record for most Grand Slam titles won.
He is now two points ahead of opponents Roger Federer, who hasn’t played in almost a year due to a series of knee surgery, and Novak Djokovic, who missed the Australian Open in January due to a lack of COVID-19 vaccination and lost at Roland Garros to Nadal.
Given his age and, more importantly, the chronic pain in his left foot that has plagued him for years, Nadal has stated repeatedly in recent days that he can never be sure whether he will be able to play again each match at Court Philippe Chatrier might be his last.