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Djokovic ends Nadal's Wimbledon adventure in classic encounter

Djokovic with the trophy on Sunday.
Djokovic with the trophy on Sunday. / Reuters
  • The Serb won his first Grand Slam since 2016 after seeing off the Spaniard in a thrilling semi-final clash

Rafael Nadal may be enjoying a renaissance of his own, but he was powerless to stop the comeback of Novak Djokovic who claimed his first Grand Slam win since 2016 at the All England Club on Sunday.

The Serb sealed an expected 6-2, 6-2, 7-6 (3) win against Kevin Anderson in the Wimbledon final after a mammoth semi-final clash against Nadal, which had been billed as the tournament decider, with either player set to be the strong favourite against the unfancied Anderson.

Anderson, by playing the longest Wimbledon semi in history against John Isner, delayed the start of the Djokovic-Nadal match on Friday. Djokovic led the match by the time the 11pm curfew hit (6-4, 3-6, 7-6 (9) ), meaning Nadal had to fly out the traps as play resumed on Saturday ahead of the women's final.

The Mallorcan did so, winning the fourth set 6-3, forcing a fifth for only the third time in their 52 career meetings.

Both players had chances to break in the fifth set; Nadal saved a match point at 8-7, but two games later Djokovic took his first match point as Nadal's forehand went wide, 10-8.

Nadal, who had not played competitively on grass for a year prior to the tournament, told reporters: "This was another great match."

"In my opinion, he deserved it," Nadal said, before adding: "I deserved it too."