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Nadal earns 1,000th win, reaches 3rd round at Paris Masters

PARIS (AP) – Rafael Nadal grew to become solely the fourth man to succeed in 1,000 match wins when he beat fellow Spanish veteran Feliciano Lopez 4-6, 7-6 (5), 6-4 within the second round of the Paris Masters on Wednesday.

The 20-time Grand Slam champion joined Jimmy Connors (1,274), Roger Federer (1,242) and Ivan Lendl (1,068) as the one male gamers to succeed in the 1,000-win mark because the Open period started in 1968.

Nadal posed at the online with the #1,000 displayed in giant numbers on the court docket.

“Well, that means that I am old,” Nadal joked, earlier than measuring the achievement. “I played well for such a very long time, because to achieve that number is because I have been playing well for a lot of years, and is something that makes me feel happy.”

The 34-year-old Nadal achieved one other milestone in Paris this yr, too, having received the French Open final month to tie Federer on 20 main titles.

But whereas there have been 1,000 followers to cheer him on within the ultimate at Roland Garros, none have been at the Bercy Arena due to the coronavirus pandemic.

“Of course it’s sad, the level of energy is difficult to compare,” Nadal stated. “So the feeling, even if 1,000 or 1,500 or 2,000 is not a lot. The real feeling, the personal feeling is completely different. It makes a big difference that the court is empty.”

After securing the victory, Nadal touched fis-ts with Lopez and put his rackets into his bag as if ending a coaching session, reasonably than celebrating an enormous achievement.

“I know it is a very special number, one thousand,” Nadal stated. “Even if it’s not the same to celebrate something like this without a crowd.”

The 34-year-old’s first win got here in May 2002 at the age of 15, when he beat Paraguayan Ramon Delgado within the first round at Mallorca.

A yr later, the 16-year-old Nadal surprised the tennis world by beating French Open champion Albert Costa beneath floodlights within the second round at the Monte Carlo Masters.

By the age of 24, he had already reached 500 wins, whereas his profession tally additionally consists of 35 Masters titles and 86 match victories general.

The 39-year-old Lopez received their first assembly again in 2003 and had overwhelmed Nadal 4 instances general. He had 22 aces and troubled a sluggish Nadal, who didn’t convert six break factors within the second set however broke instantly at the beginning of the third.

“I started the match the worst way possible, especially against a big server like Feli,” Nadal stated. “After that I played under a lot of pressure the rest of the match, but I found a way.”

Nadal, who has by no means received this match, subsequent performs Jordan Thompson of Australia, who upset Fifteenth-seeded Croat Borna Coric 2-6, 6-4, 6-2.

Alexander Zverev joined Nadal within the third round by beating Miomir Kecmanovic 6-2, 6-2.

The fourth-seeded German didn’t face a break level towards the Forty second-ranked Serb.

Zverev hit eight aces and transformed his first match level. Chasing a 3rd title of the yr, he subsequent faces Adrian Mannarino of France.

Fifth-seeded Andrey Rublev simply received 6-1, 6-2 towards Radu Albot for a tour-leading fortieth win of the yr, transferring one forward of top-ranked Novak Djokovic. Rublev received the Erste Bank Open in Vienna final Sunday for a tour-leading fifth title of the season and subsequent performs both three-time Grand Slam champion Stan Wawrinka or unseeded American Tommy Paul.

Meanwhile, No. 3 Russian Daniil Medevev superior after Kevin Anderson retired when trailing 5-2 within the first-set tiebreaker due to a proper leg harm.

No. 6 Diego Schwartzman beat Frenchman Richard Gasquet 7-5, 6-3, retaining the Argentine on the right track to clinch the ultimate spot for the Nov. 15-22 ATP Finals in London. He can assure that by reaching the semifinals in Paris.

No. 10 Milos Raonic additionally superior by profitable 6-4, 6-4 towards Frenchman Pierre-Hugues Herbert.

The big-serving Canadian, a runner-up right here in 2014, had 11 aces and concluded with a sliced volley at the online. He subsequent faces American Marcos Giron.

No. 16 Alex de Minaur additionally superior with a 6-3, 7-5 win over Italian Lorenzo Sonego – the runner-up to Rublev final Sunday.


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