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Rafael Nadal wins first title of 2014!

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1511306_759944800700836_1353537341_n (1)(Championspk)World No. 1 Rafael Nadal won his first title of 2014 by defeating France’s Gael Monfils 6-1, 6-7, 6-2 at the Qatar ExxonMobil Open in Doha. This is Rafa’s first title in his sixth singles appearance at the tournament. With this win, Rafa ushers in his 663rd career win, surpassing the tie he set with Michael Chang yesterday, and also surpasses Andre Agassi’s ATP titles record (whom he was tied with until today) to win his 61st ATP title. This is also the first time that Rafa has won a title before going into the Australian Open.

Given the ease in which Monfils slid his way into the final, and his winning record against Rafa in Doha (which in itself isn’t necessarily a useful statistic or predictor of current performance), the match was much anticipated and promised to be unpredictable. It lived up to expectations. The first set saw Rafa utterly dominating the court and taking just 23 minutes to end at 6-1. The second set started out with Monfils breaking to be up 3-0 before Rafa scored. Rafa broke to even the set, before Monfils took it in the tiebreaker at 7-6(5). The third set saw Rafa gain momentum once again, ending at 6-2.

Rafa heads to Melbourne next, where he will attempt his second Australian Open championship victory.

Heartiest congratulations, Rafa! All our best wishes are with you for a season more successful than your last! Vamos!

he first tournament of the season, Rafael Nadal has reached his first final of the year at the Qatar ExxonMobil Open in Doha by defeating German Peter Gojowczyk in three sets. His opponent in the final is Gael Monfils of France.

Rafa and Monfils have played 10 times in the past, with Rafa leading the series 8-2. It is noteworthy, however, that both of the Frenchman’s victories against Rafa were in Doha, in 2009 and 2012. Rafa is looking to secure his first win at Doha in his sixth appearance.

ATP World Tour, Grand Slam, and Davis Cup Main Draw Results
Year Tournament & City Surface Round Winner & Score
2012 Doha
Qatar Hard S Monfils, Gael
6-3, 6-4 Stats
2011 Barcelona
Spain Clay Q Nadal, Rafael
6-2, 6-2 Stats
2010 Tokyo
Japan Hard F Nadal, Rafael
6-1, 7-5 Stats
2010 ATP World Tour Masters 1000 Madrid
Spain Clay Q Nadal, Rafael
6-1, 6-3 Stats
2009 US Open
NY, U.S.A. Hard R16 Nadal, Rafael
6-7(3), 6-3, 6-1, 6-3 Stats
2009 Rotterdam
The Netherlands Hard S Nadal, Rafael
6-4, 6-4 Stats
2009 Doha
Qatar Hard Q Monfils, Gael
6-4, 6-4 Stats
2008 ATP Masters Series Paris
France Hard R16 Nadal, Rafael
6-3, 6-2 Stats
2006 ATP Masters Series Rome
Italy Clay S Nadal, Rafael
6-2, 6-2 Stats
2005 ATP Masters Series Monte Carlo
Monaco Clay R64 Nadal, Rafael
6-3, 6-2 St

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