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French Open 2012: Nadal vs. Djokovic Final Results and Recap

PARIS, FRANCE - JUNE 11:  Rafael Nadal of Spain celebrates victory with the Coupe des Mousquetaires trophy in the men's singles final against Novak Djokovic of Serbia during day 16 of the French Open at Roland Garros on June 11, 2012 in Paris, France.  (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
Matthew Stockman/Getty Images
Timothy RappFeatured Columnist IVSeptember 30, 2016

Perhaps it is time we rename the French Open as the Nadal Open. He owns the tournament at this point, after all.

After a second rain delay suspended the final between Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic until Monday—with the momentum on Djokovic's side and Nadal barely grasping a 6-4, 6-3, 2-6, 1-2 lead—the Spaniard recovered his form, taking the fourth set 7-5 and winning his seventh title at Roland Garros in eight years.

Nadal surpassed Bjorn Borg for the most French Open titles in history and tied him for the third-most Grand Slam titles at 11.

Not a bad day at the office for Mr. Nadal.

For Djokovic, it was a disappointing result, as he often looked helpless against Nadal in the first two sets and couldn't maintain his momentum in the fourth set on Monday. And the loss to Nadal also ended his bid to hold all four Grand Slam championships at once, a feat not accomplished since Rod Laver did so in 1968.

It's not terribly surprising that Djokovic couldn't force a fifth set, however. The soggier conditions by the end of Sunday clearly favored Nole, and he simply didn't play well enough to contest Nadal. With a first-serve percentage at just 59 percent and 53 unforced errors, Djokovic didn't help his own cause.

But Djokovic played far better against Nadal than any other player at this tournament. The Spaniard only dropped one set and improved to an absurd 59-1 at the French Open.

And given this result, one thing became clear—we have a new, epic rivalry at the top of the men's game, a rivalry I would argue is the best one going in sports today.

Nadal now has three straight victories over the Djoker after dropping seven straight matches to the Serbian star, and his victory at Roland Garros ended Nole's three-match winning streak over Nadal in Grand Slam finals.

Wimbledon, here we come!


Hit me up on Twitter—my tweets really wanted to have another.

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