Sunday, October 15, 2017

Federer-Nadal XXXVIII: Federer Beats Nadal In 4th Final In 2017 To Win Shanghai Masters

Roger Federer won his 94th career ATP tour title on Sunday when he defeated his arch-rival (and current World #1) Rafael Nadal 6-4 6-3 in 71 minutes to win the Shanghai Masters. Federer is now tied with Ivan Lendl for second place on the all-time list, behind Jimmy Connors 109 titles. It was the 4th time he had beaten Nadal in a final this year  (Australian Open, Indian Wells, Miami Open and Shanghai Masters). He has now beaten him 5 times in a row and has not lost to Nadal since the 2014 Australian Open semifinal.

This match was the 38th meeting between the two rivals, which Nadal now leads 23-15. Even though the scoreline appears as if today's match was close, in reality Federer never faced a breakpoint, while he converted 3 of 7 breakpoints he earned against Nadal. He had 10 aces to Nadal's 4. Nadal was riding a 16 match win streak which included 3 titles (US Open, Beijing Open and China Open). He is the #1 ranked player in the world and is still 1950 points ahead of Federer, with only 3000 points at stake for the rest of the 2017 season. It is almost certain that Nadal will end the year at #1, for the first time since 2013. Nadal's year-to-date record is 61-10.

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