Djokovic upbeat despite yet another setback in Madrid

In the final of the men's Mutua Madrid Open, 23-year-old Austrian Dominic Tim will compete for the title with 30-year-old Spaniard Rafael Nadal.

The Spaniard is now 15-0 on his favored surface this year having also picked up his 10th titles in Monte Carlo and Barcelona in recent weeks.

Indeed, even with Djokovic opening serve, Nadal won the first four points for an immediate break, helped by a couple of uncharacteristic errors from the Serb.

Of course the conversation inevitably moved to the fact that with this win, Nadal has leapfrogged Roger Federer in the rankings, not that he gave much store in the rankings to determine who would lift the title at the French Open.

"I'm very happy about how things are going".

And Nadal was forced to save a break point in the final game with a drop shot Djokovic couldn't get back over the net.

With Sunday's victory, Nadal increased his career title count to 72 which includes 52 wins on clay, four on grass and 16 championships on hard courts.

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Nadal, a four-time victor in the Spanish capital, will prove a much sterner examination following his stunning straight-sets success over holder Novak Djokovic. "I think he (Rafael Nadal) played a very good match in Barcelona".

Thiem was trying to win his ninth title, and the first since winning the Rio de Janeiro tournament in the beginning of the year. "It's just one of these days where your opponent is playing better than you, and you have to be able to say "congratulations" and move on".

"This is a very emotional period of the season", Nadal told reporters. The world number two broke back in the fourth to tie the set at 2-2 and celebrated by punching the air.It proved to be just a brief respite for the Serbian, however, as Nadal broke him again in the next game and held to restore his two-game lead. He lost to Goffin in the quarterfinals in Monte Carlo, his first clay tournament of the season. These tournaments are so strong, so it's fantastic for me to go that far. "I hope you understand and respect that".

Nastase has been banned from the French Open and Wimbledon after he was ejected from Romania's Fed Cup clash with Great Britain last month for a series of foul-mouthed rants directed at British captain Anne Keothavong and No. 1 Johanna Konta, as well as umpires and members of the press.

Early signs weren't good for Thiem after a break between sets as he surrendered his serve at the first time of asking, and despite keeping his enemy stuck to his own baseline at times, the Spanish native spun the fixture in his favour.

It was the first title of the season for the eighth-ranked Halep, who was the first player to make it to three Madrid finals.

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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