It was 1:00 am in Australia’s Melbourne when a huge cheer emerged from the Rod Laver Arena, as Rafael Nadal hit a superb volley to win the fifth set of the game.
Nadal became edged past Medvedev with three championship points to win the opening Grand Slam of 2022. And also became the first man in the sport’s history to win 21 Grand Slam titles.
It was really a dream run for Nadal in the tournament. And the final was no different. The Russian player Daniil Medvedev didn’t cut any slack to the former world number 1.
Rafael Nadal Put up a great fight
Medvedev almost had his man in the first two sets, which he won in a competitive yet dominating manner (6-2,7-6). The third set almost seemed to be a formality, as Medvedev seemed destined to win the game.
Nadal, however, was not going down without a fight. He had shown that in the second set, which was decided by a tie-breaker, and then he made it happen in the third set of the game.
With the score of 2-1, the Russian started losing his head a little like it was seen several other times in the tournament. Once again, the crowd came into the game, and Medvedev lost focus on what was happening on the court.
And by the time he realized, it was already 2-2, and Rafa was heading towards the glory. In the final set, Medvedev matched Nadal toe to toe, but the vintage Rafa had returned, and there was no way the young gun from Russia was going to stop him.
Nadal was forced back another game after having the championship at arm’s reach at 5-4. Standing at 6-5 and serving for the title, the Spaniard made no mistake. In the final rally, he sent the Russian the other way and then placed one of the perfect volleys of the game to win the title fair and square.
A night to remember for Rafael Nadal
The racket dropped out of Rafa’s hand as he couldn’t believe that he had actually done it. He created history after returning from a career-threatening injury only a month ago.
Even though he said earlier in the tournament that he didn’t care about winning the Slam, the victory meant a lot to him. And this was clearly visible in the manner he celebrated it by pumping his fist multiple times as the crowd emerged into a loud cheer after almost five and a half hours of an action-packed evening.
This victory also made him the only third man in the history of the open era to win every grand slam twice.