Rafael Nadal defeated Cameron Norrie in the final of the 2022 Mexican Open in Acapulco to lift the 91st ATP title of his career. The victory extended the Spaniard's winning streak to 15, continuing his best ever start to a season. The win also put Nadal atop the list of players with the best winning percentage in the Open Era.
Coming into the tournament this year, Nadal's overall match-winning percentage was second only to Novak Djokovic. The Spainard had won 1,038 of his 1,247 matches (83.23%) since turning pro in 2001, which was marginally poorer than Djokovic's 989 wins from 1,188 matches (83.24%).
Nadal, however, was in menacing form throughout the week in Acapulco, picking up five dominant wins en route to the title. The Spaniard beat Denis Kudla in his first match before ousting Stefan Kozlov, Tommy Paul and Daniil Medvedev in subsequent encounters.
The Spaniard's straight-sets dismissal of Norrie in the final brought his overall win tally up to 1,043, helping him improve his winning percentage to 83.31%
Djokovic, meanwhile, suffered a shock quarter-final exit at the 2022 Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships. The Serb was handed a 6-4, 7-6(4) defeat by Jiri Vesely, which ensured Medvedev's ascent to the World No. 1 ranking.
The loss also brought Djokovic's career match-winning percentage down a notch to 83.21%, with 991 wins from a total of 1,191 matches.
As a result, Nadal climbed to the top of the list, which includes long-time rival Roger Federer (at No. 4 with a winning percentage of 82.08%) and other tennis Bjorn Borg (No. 3 with 82.36%) and Jimmy Connors (No. 5 with 81.82%).
Rafael Nadal to climb to No. 4 in ATP rankings on Monday
Nadal's title-winning run at Acapulco ensures he will climb a place in the official world rankings, scheduled to be updated on Monday.
The Spaniard, currently ranked No. 5, will swap places with fourth-ranked Stefanos Tsitispas. With a total of 6,515 ranking points, Nadal is still quite far from the World No. 1 ranking, which will be held by Daniil Medvedev with a total of 8,615 points.
However, if Rafael Nadal continues his purple patch, he could recapture the top position as early as April.
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