11th June, 2012
Rafael Nadal clinched a record seventh French Open title on Monday, defeating world number one Novak Djokovic 6-4, 6-3, 2-6, 7-5 and shattering the Serb’s dream of Grand Slam history.
In a final pushed into a third week for only the second time because of Sunday’s rain, the Spanish world number two, playing in his 16th Grand Slam final, also took his Paris record to a staggering 52 wins against just one loss.
Victory allowed him to break the tie for six French Opens he shared with Bjorn Borg.
It was the 26-year-old’s 11th Grand Slam title, taking him one behind Roy Emerson, three off Pete Sampras and five away from the record of 16 held by Roger Federer.
For five-time major winner Djokovic, the Wimbledon, US Open and Australian Open champion, it was the end of his dream of emulating Don Budge (1938) and Rod Laver (1962 and 1969) by holding all the Grand Slams at once.