Davis Cup Finals 2019: Rafael Nadal, Spain Defeat Canada 2-0 to Win Title

James Dudko@@JamesDudkoFeatured ColumnistNovember 24, 2019

MADRID, SPAIN - NOVEMBER 24: Rafael Nadal of Spain celebrates in his singles final match against Denis Shapovalov of Canada during Day Seven of the 2019 Davis Cup at La Caja Magica on November 24, 2019 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Spain won the 2019 Davis Cup after a 2-0 win over Canada in Madrid on Sunday. It's the first title since 2011 for Rafael Nadal-led Spain.

Roberto Bautista Agut put the host nation into a commanding position by defeating Felix Auger-Aliassime in straight sets. Agut set the stage for Rafael Nadal to seal Spain's sixth Davis Cup, and he dominated Denis Shapovalov during the opening set before surviving a tense and lengthy tiebreak in the second to seal the title.

   

Final Score

Canada 0-2 Spain

  • Roberto Bautista Agut bt. Felix Auger-Aliassime: 7-6(3), 6-3
  • Rafael Nadal bt. Denis Shapovalov: 6-3, 7-6(7)

Nadal was in the mood to wrap up the title quickly, and he duly set about dismantling Shapovalov. The 33-year-old dropped a mere three points on serve to claim the opening set.

To his credit, Shapovalov didn't buckle. Instead, he showcased athleticism to try to keep pace with Nadal and built an early lead in the second:

Shapovalov's hustle was rewarded with a 3-2 advantage, putting the pressure on Nadal. The decorated veteran responded in style, but he routinely found Shapovalov unwilling to to yield, with a tiebreak needed to settle things:

It eventually went Nadal's way, but only after more game tennis from Shapovalov. The world No. 15 did nothing to disgrace himself or his nation in the final, but Nadal has just been too good since the knockout rounds began.

Finishing the job in the final was the only appropriate way to cap his stunning performances against Argentina and England.

Earlier, Bautista Agut and Auger-Aliassime were strong on serve in the opening set. Neither got broken, but Bautista Agut played mores solidly to win the tiebreak. 

Double-faults cost Auger-Aliassime during the second set:

Buoyed by earning his first break point of the day, Bautista Agut didn't ease off two games up in the second set. Instead, he continued to wow those in attendance with an array of spectacular shots:

Bautista Agut did see off a brief rally, but he broke to love at 3-2 to move to within two games of taking the  match. The moment duly arrived, giving Spain a tight grip on the final.

It was a grip Nadal refused to relinquish, meaning Spain took full advantage of hosting the finals and made the new format overseen by Gerard Pique and others a success.

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