2010 US Open Men’s Finals: Nadal defeats Djokovic, earns first career Grand Slam

US OPEN Tennis 2010US Open Men’s Final 2010: Rafael Nadal vs Novak Djokovic Live Stream

World No. 1 Rafael Nadal takes on No. 3 seed Novak Djokovic Sunday afternoon 4:00PM ET September 12, 2010 for the US Open 2010 Men’s Final match at the Arthur Ashe Stadium, Flushing Meadows, New York.

Rafael Nadal easily beat Mikhail Youzhny in straight sets 6-2, 6-3, 6-4 in their semifinal match Saturday. Nadal is now just one victory away from earning his first career Grand Slam.

Nadal will be bidding to become the first man since Rod Laver in 1969 to win the French Open, Wimbledon and the U.S. Open in the same season. The 24-year-old Spaniard also can become the seventh man in tennis history to own at least one championship from each Grand Slam tournament.

In the other semifinal match, Novak Djokovic advances to the final upsetting and defeating No. 2 seed Roger Federer in 5 thrilling sets 5-7, 6-1, 5-7, 6-2, 7-5.

Sunday’s final will have, coincidentally, the 22nd career meeting between Djokovic and Nadal, one of whom will become a U.S. Open champion for the first time.

UPDATE:  Nadal tops Djokovic 6-4, 5-7, 6-4, 6-2 for the 2010 US Open title, completes career Slam.

Game Recap

NEW YORK — Chasing his first U.S. Open championship, Rafael Nadal was so dominant, so determined, so defiant, his face curling into a sneer with every wallop of the ball.

With two marvelous weeks at Flushing Meadows capped by victory in a thrilling final Monday night, Nadal fashioned an emphatic answer to all those questions about whether he could grab the only major trophy missing from his collection.

Now owner of a career Grand Slam at age 24, champion at three consecutive major tournaments and nine overall, the No. 1-ranked Nadal is suddenly chasing something else: recognition as the greatest tennis player in history.

Approaching perfection for stretches — the guy played more than 40 points in a row without making an unforced error — Nadal beat Novak Djokovic 6-4, 5-7, 6-4, 6-2 in a match filled with fantastic shotmaking by both men and interrupted by a thunderstorm a day after it was postponed by rain.

“For the first time in my career, I played a very, very good match in this tournament,” said Nadal, who never had been past the semifinals at Flushing Meadows. “That’s my feeling, no? I played my best match in the U.S. Open at the most important moment.”

Once seen as Roger Federer’s nemesis, Nadal has made his own greatness quite clear — and is more than halfway to Federer’s career record of 16 Grand Slam titles. Nadal’s total already is one more than Jimmy Connors, Andre Agassi or Ivan Lendl won.

It’s clear where Nadal stands on the matter. He said “talk about if I am better or worse than Roger is stupid, because the titles say he’s much better than me.”

Djokovic, understandably, had a different take on Nadal.

“He has the capabilities already now to become the best player ever,” said Djokovic, who lost the 2007 U.S. Open final to Federer, but upset him in Saturday’s semifinals. “I think [Nadal is] playing the best tennis that I’ve ever seen him play on hard courts. He has improved his serve drastically — the speed, the accuracy. And, of course, his baseline [game] is as good as ever.”

Nadal is a year younger than Federer was when he got to No. 9, and about 3½ years younger than Federer was when he completed his career Grand Slam at the 2009 French Open. Nadal is the seventh man in history with at least one title from each of tennis’ four most important tournaments.

Bjorn Borg was the only other man to have nine major championships by 24.

“It’s too far; 16, for me, is too far to think about right now,” Nadal said, with his typical humility. “My goal, all my life, was the same: keep improving.”


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