Rafael Nadal captured his tenth French Open title Sunday, further solidifying his moniker of “The King of Clay,” downing Stan Wawrinka, 6-2, 6-3, 6-1. With the win, not only does Nadal become the first man or woman in the Open Era to win 10 titles at a Grand Slam, but he moves to second place on the all-time Grand Slam titles list.
Coming into the match, Nadal was unbeaten in nine prior French Open finals, while Wawrinka had never lost a Grand Slam final in three previous matches. Just last year at Roland Garros, Nadal was forced to withdraw before his third-round match with Marcel Granollers due to a left wrist injury which cut his 2016 short.
“It’s a feeling that’s impossible to describe,” Nadal said post-match. “For me the nerves and the adrenaline I feel when I play on this court is impossible to compare to another court. It is the most important event in my career, to win again here is impossible to describe.”
With the win, Nadal moves into the second place sport in the ATP Men’s Singles Rankings, passing Wawrkina and just behind Andy Murray who maintains his hold on the top spot.
On the women’s side of the draw, 20-year-old Jelena Ostapenko capped off as memorable a run a non-seeded participant could have at the French Open, coming down from a set to defeat Simona Halep, 4-6, 6-4, 6-3. Coming into the match ranked 47th in the world, Ostapenko becomes the first Latvian to be crowned a Grand Slam champion, and rises 35 spots to land at 12th in the WTA Women’s Singles Rankings.
“I have no words, it is my dream. I'm so happy,” Ostapenko said post-match. “I knew Simona was a great player. But I tried to play aggressive and everything turned my way. I fought for every point. I'm glad it finished my way. I still can’t believe this because it was my dream and now it came true.”
With a win, Halep would have jumped into first place atop the WTA Women’s Singles Rankings, but her run to the finals at Roland Garros was good enough to jump her two places to number two in the world, just 185 points behind world number one Angelique Kerber.