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Commemorating Rafael Nadal's 19th Grand Slam title with the Spaniard's 19 Grand Slam records

ANALYST
Feature
Modified 21 Dec 2019, 00:26 IST

Nadal celebrates his 4th US Open title
Nadal celebrates his 4th US Open title

Spain's Rafael Nadal pulled to within one Slam of Roger Federer's all-time mark of 20 titles by beating first-time Major finalist Daniil Medvedev in an instant classic to lift his 4th title at Flushing Meadows.

To commemorate the occasion, here are 19 Grand Slam records created by the legendary left-hander en route to his 19 Grand Slam titles:

#1 Most titles at one tournament

Nadal lifts his record-extending 12th title at Roland Garros in 2019
Nadal lifts his record-extending 12th title at Roland Garros in 2019

Nadal beat Dominic Thiem in the 2019 final to win his 12th title at Roland Garros. That is a record for most titles at any Grand Slam tournament.

The next best haul of titles at any Major by a player in the Open Era is Roger Federer's 8 titles at Wimbledon.

#2 Only player to win a Major title in 10 consecutive seasons

Nadal lifts his 9th title at Roland Garros
Nadal lifts his 9th title at Roland Garros

Nadal beat Djokovic in a second French Open final meeting between the pair to lift his ninth title on the terre battue of Roland Garros. The victory extended Nadal's incredible streak of winning a Major title to 10 consecutive seasons (2005-1, 2006-1, 2007-1, 2008-2, 2009-1, 2010-3, 2011-1, 2012-1, 2013-2, 2014-1).

The next best streak of winning Major titles in consecutive seasons is Federer's eight (2003-2010).

#3 Most successful title defenses

Nadal had his record 9th successful title defence at a Grand Slam at Roland Garros 2019
Nadal had his record 9th successful title defence at a Grand Slam at Roland Garros 2019
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Rafael Nadal beat Thiem in the 2019 final to defend his Roland Garros title for a record ninth time, which is a record for most title defenses at a Major in the Open Era.

The Spaniard had his first successful title defense on the Parisian terre battue in 2006, followed by further defenses in 2007-08, 2011-14, and 2018-19.

The next best mark of most successful title defenses at a Major belongs to Pete Sampras, who defended his Wimbledon title on five occasions (1994-95, 98-2000).

#4 First player to win five Major titles after turning 30

Nadal celebrates his 4th title at the US Open
Nadal celebrates his 4th title at the US Open

Nadal beat first-time Slam finalist Daniil Medvedev in a pulsating five-setter to lift his fourth title at the US Open.

In the process, the Spaniard became the first player to win five Major titles after celebrating his 30th birthday, which broke a tie with Rod Laver, Ken Rosewall, Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer.

#5 One of five players to win the career Grand Slam in the Open Era

Nadal poses with his first US Open title in 2010
Nadal poses with his first US Open title in 2010

Nadal beat Djokovic in the 2010 US Open final to win his first title at Flushing Meadows. Following his title triumphs at the Australian Open (2009), French Open (2005-08) and Wimbledon (2008), the Spaniard emulated Rod Laver, Andre Agassi and Federer to become the fourth player to win all four Major tournaments - a feat termed as the 'career Grand Slam'.

Novak Djokovic, with a victory in the 2016 Roland Garros final, joined the quartet of Laver, Agassi, Federer and Nadal as the only players till date to win the career Grand Slam in the Open Era.

At 24, Nadal is the youngest player to win the coveted career Grand Slam.

#6 One of two players to win three consecutive Grand Slam titles in a season

Nadal lifts his third Grand Slam title of the year at the 2010 US Open
Nadal lifts his third Grand Slam title of the year at the 2010 US Open

Nadal beat Djokovic in a four-set US Open final to win his first title at Flushing Meadows.

Following his wins over Robin Soderling at the French Open and Tomas Berdych at Wimbledon earlier in the season, Nadal emulated Rod Laver (1969) as the only players in the Open Era to win three consecutive Grand Slam titles.

#7 One of two players to win a Slam in his teens, 20s, and 30s

Nadal poses after winning his 10th Roland Garros title in 2017
Nadal poses after winning his 10th Roland Garros title in 2017

Nadal ended a three-year Grand Slam hiatus by winning his 10th title at the French Open in 2017. In the process, the 30-year-old Spaniard became only the second player in the Open Era to win a Grand Slam title in his teens (2005 French Open), 20s (13 titles) and 30s.

The only other player to do this is Pete Sampras who won the 1990 US Open at the age of nineteen, 12 other Grand Slam titles in his 20s and the 2002 US Open at the age of 31.

#8 One of two players to win the French Open on debut

Nadal won the French Open on his tournament debut in 2005
Nadal won the French Open on his tournament debut in 2005

Two days after his 19th birthday, in his first tournament appearance, Rafael Nadal beat fellow left-hander Mariano Puerta of Argentina to lift the Roland Garros title.

This marked the second instance of a player in the Open Era winning the French Open on debut. Mats Wilander was the first player to do so at the 1982 French Open.

#9 Most consecutive titles at the French Open (5)

Nadal poses with his 5th consecutive French Open title in 2014
Nadal poses with his 5th consecutive French Open title in 2014

In 2014, Nadal thwarted Djokovic in their second French Open final to win record five consecutive titles at the tournament.

The mark lowered the joint-erstwhile record by Nadal (2005-08) and legendary Swede Bjorn Borg (1978-1981) of four consecutive titles at the second Grand Slam tournament of the season.

#10 One of 3 teenagers to win the French Open

Nadal poses with his first French Open title in 2005
Nadal poses with his first French Open title in 2005

A 19-year-old Nadal beat Argentina's Mariano Puerta in the 2005 final to win his first title at the French Open.

In the process, the Spanish left-hander became only the third player in the Open Era to win the clay-court Major in his teens, following Mats Wilander and Michael Chang's wins in 1982 and 1989 respectively.

#11 Most match wins at the French Open (93)

Nadal poses with his 12th French Open title in 2019
Nadal poses with his 12th French Open title in 2019

Nadal beat Austria's Dominic Thiem in a second consecutive final between the two players to lift his record-extending 12th title at Roland Garros.

In the process, the Spaniard extended his match-win record at the second Grand Slam of the year to 93, which is the most at the tournament in the Open Era. The next best match-win tally at the French Open belongs to Federer (70).

#12 Best match-win streak at the French Open (39)

Nadal beat Sock in the 2015 French Open fourth round for his record 39th consecutive match win at the tournament
Nadal beat Sock in the 2015 French Open fourth round for his record 39th consecutive match win at the tournament

Nadal has won a record 39 consecutive matches at the French Open. The streak, which started with a first-round win in 2010 over Frenchman Gianni Mina, came to an end in a straight-sets defeat to eventual finalist Novak Djokovic in the 2015 quarterfinals.

The next best consecutive match win streak at the French Open belongs to Borg (28 from 1978 to 1981).

#13 Most consecutive wins in a Major final against the same opponent

Nadal beat Federer in the 2008 French Open final
Nadal beat Federer in the 2008 French Open final

In his third consecutive French Open final against the top-seeded Roger Federer in 2008, Nadal emerged triumphant for the third consecutive time.

That marked the first time in the Open Era that a player had emerged triumphant on each occasion against the same opponent in three consecutive finals at a Major.

Federer got close to returning the favour at 2008 Wimbledon, inching to within two points of a third consecutive win over Nadal at the grasscourt major, but the Spaniard thwarted the Swiss' ambitions.

#14 One of three players to win at least 50 matches at each of the four Majors

Nadal beat Kyrgios in the second round at 2019 Wimbledon
Nadal beat Kyrgios in the second round at 2019 Wimbledon

Nadal beat Australian Nick Kyrgios in the 2019 Wimbledon second round to notch up his 50th match win at the grass-court Major.

In the process, the Spaniard emulated Federer and Djokovic as the only players in the Open Era to record at least 50 match wins at each of the four Grand Slam tournaments.

#15 One of two players to win the French Open-Wimbledon double on 2 occasions

Nadal beat Berdych in the 2010 Wimbledon final
Nadal beat Berdych in the 2010 Wimbledon final

Following his win over Robin Soderling in the 2010 French Open final, Nadal beat Tomas Berdych in the 2010 Wimbledon final to win his second title at the grass-court Major.

Having also won the French Open and Wimbledon titles in the same season in 2008, Nadal emulated Borg as the only players in the Open Era to win the French-Wimbledon double on two occasions.

Borg won the French Open-Wimbledon double on a record three occasions (1978 - 80).

#16 One of 2 players to win 16 Grand Slam finals after winning the opening set

Nadal beat Medvedev to win his fourth US Open title in 2019
Nadal beat Medvedev to win his fourth US Open title in 2019

Nadal beat Daniil Medvedev in a five-set thriller to win his fourth Flushing Meadows title. In the title match, Nadal romped to a two-set lead before Medvedev fought back to force a decider. The Spaniard had the last laugh though, thwarting the challenge of the young Russian in the deciding set to win his 19th Grand Slam title,

The win marked a record-equaling 16th occasion when the Spaniard won a Grand Slam title after taking the opening set in the final.

Nadal shares the record with Federer, who has also won 16 Major finals after winning the opening set in a Grand Slam title match.

#17 Most Grand Slam titles by a left-handed player

Nadal beat Medvedev in the 2019 US Open final for his 19th Grand Slam title
Nadal beat Medvedev in the 2019 US Open final for his 19th Grand Slam title

Nadal beat first-time major finalist Daniil Medvedev of Russia in a near five-hour five-set thriller to win his fourth title at the US Open.

In the process, the Spaniard extended his own record of most titles by a left-handed player in the Open Era to 19. The next best title haul by a left-handed player is Jimmy Connors' tally of 8 Grand Slam titles.

Rod Laver won 11 Grand Slam titles in his career, but six of the Australian's titles (1960-62) came when tennis had not yet opened its doors to professionals.

#18 One of three players to win 250 Grand Slam matches

Nadal beat De Minaur in the third round of the 2019 Australian Open
Nadal beat De Minaur in the third round of the 2019 Australian Open

Nadal beat young Australian Alex De Minaur in the third round of the 2019 Australian Open to record his 250th Grand Slam match win.

In the process, Nadal emulated Federer and Djokovic as the only players in the Open Era to record 250 or more match wins at a Grand Slam.

At the conclusion of the 2019 US Open, Federer, Djokovic, and Nadal have 357, 280, and 277 Grand Slam match wins respectively.

#19 One of two players to play at least 27 Grand Slam finals

Nadal beat Medvedev in his 27th Grand Slam final at the 2019 US Open
Nadal beat Medvedev in his 27th Grand Slam final at the 2019 US Open

Nadal beat first-time Grand Slam semifinalist Matteo Berrettini of Italy in the 2019 US Open semifinals to reach his 27th title match at a Grand Slam tournament (against Medvedev).

In the process, the Spaniard became the only player, after Federer, to contest at least 27 Grand Slam finals in the Open Era.

Published 10 Sep 2019, 11:56 IST
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