Published: Wed, June 13, 2018
Sports | By Toni Houston

Federer's decision to skip Paris hurts tennis - Wilander

Federer's decision to skip Paris hurts tennis - Wilander

Guido Pella of Argentina defeated John Millman of Australia 6-2, 6-2 to join three Germans in the second round of the Stuttgart Open on Monday.

Federer awaits next, with the Swiss returning to action for the first time since early April following his decision to skip the clay-court season.

The muscular Spaniard had won all 10 of his previous Roland Garros finals and although Thiem was the only man to have beaten him on clay over the past two seasons, the Austrian never threatened the claycourt master.

His record 11th French Open crown saw him take his grand slam haul to 17 major titles.

Thiem managed to break back, but it was the only blow he landed all afternoon.

The victory also allowed the 32-year-old Nadal to hold onto the No. 1 ranking, ahead of Federer.

Sunday's score might have looked rather routine, but there was some drama in the third set in sticky Paris when Nadal called for the trainer at 2-1, 30-0. "I happy that other people have things, and I am very satisfied, and I feel very lucky with all the things that happened to me", Nadal added. Nadal's introduction included a year-by-year accounting of every time he'd already won the French Open.

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If there were any reason for a bit of intrigue entering Sunday's match, it was this: Thiem beat Nadal in two sets on red clay at Rome in May 2017 and again at Madrid last month.

"I was really fighting and playing from the first to the last moment".

The city of Paris is set to witness history as Tennis ace Rafael Nadal is aiming to win his 11th Rolland Garros title when he faces off with fourth-seeded Dominic Thiem of Austria, who is looking forward to claiming his first. And I did it in the past when I was much younger, quicker, because I played back to back.

"Let me enjoy this title", Nadal said with a smile. Of course, I have ambition, of course.

"For sure, me, I'm confident that this was not my last Grand Slam final", Thiem said, "and that's my biggest goal: to get into the next one and then to do better than today".

"But we go step by step, I have a lot of good players around me in the draw and I think it's a tricky one, but I am very excited to be here". You can't live with that feeling, no? "It was just bad misses".

Nadal added Wimbledon crowns in 2008 and 2010, an Australian Open title in 2009 and completed the career Grand Slam in 2010 by defeating Djokovic in the US Open final, becoming the youngest in the Open era (since 1967) to complete the four-event career sweep.

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