The king of clay is definitely back. After the vicissitudes of 2015 and early 2016, Rafa Nadal has joined two tournaments in a row on his favorite surface. It has been crowned for the ninth time in the Barcelona Open Banc Sabadell with a hard but deserved victory over the champion of the last two years: Kei Nishikori.

It is also the title number 49 Spaniard on clay equaling the record high of Argentine Guillermo Vilas. It is also the 69 trophy bites the best Spanish player of all time, now aims to continue the upward path in the Masters in Rome and Madrid, trying to get clear for the great appointment of Roland Garros where he will seek his tenth laurel.

rafael nadal

The first set was decided largely by how Nishikori played. The Japanese with a swift tennis Rafa got in trouble in virtually all ‘games’ service of former world number one . Just in the third game, the Spaniard with claw and some help from Nishikori, breaking up two balls.

Immediately eight – time champion in Barcelona lashed out and took his first break ball. Nishikori 3-1 and seemed to suffer a debacle but it was not. Manages to get back with three breakpoints for and this time although Rafa erased two of them, the East gets the ‘break’. For the Spaniard it was torture serve. For the third ‘game’ Rafa consecutive kick found himself on the ropes. 0-40 but good services and great courage would extinguish the fires . 4-3 to the Spaniard having saved 7 of 8 break points.

Nishikori says his serve and then threatens Rafa in the ninth where he came to be in ‘deuce’. At time defending champion was missing him to lunge and as in his heyday Rafa when he forgives, he does . Just his second ball to break the Japanese in the tenth and 06.04 bill to close a set where suffered terribly but tireless warrior who escaped unhurt.

It was the opportunity to see the wood Nishikori. But the Japanese lost consistency with the first serve . Just won 27% of points on his first two rounds of service, so it soon yielded twice but recovered one of them. In the lengthy fifth ‘game’ the Japanese had twice ball to match the development of the set, but his deficit remained the time to take advantage of the circumstances . Rafa, one of the ‘kings exhaust circuit’ kept his distance Halftime score 4-1 although little is seen on the track.

In the seventh game again breaking ball for Nishikori and finally the East could capitalize only the third of thirteen had generated . Marker 4-3. Rafa still up but now it was bicampeón option to match, mission accomplished because hardly had to save break point before. Then Rafa said at least a tiebreaker by winning the eleventh game and came out determined to end the lawsuit in the next.

He pressed as he knows how, with very deep shots and adding to it, incredible defenses to force Nishikori have to risk too much and thus fail. Rafa Ball Championship and Japanese makes another mistake but forced. 7-5 after 2 hours 4 minutes ninth crown in Barcelona to confirm the resurgence of tennis Manacor boss with these actions a clear message to Novak Djokovic, the team to beat on this surface it is again.

Mark GreeneTennisrafael nadal
The king of clay is definitely back. After the vicissitudes of 2015 and early 2016, Rafa Nadal has joined two tournaments in a row on his favorite surface. It has been crowned for the ninth time in the Barcelona Open Banc Sabadell with a hard but deserved victory over...