Rafael Nadal reached the final at the opening three tournaments of the season. After conquering Melbourne and the Australian Open, Rafa earned a place in the ATP 500 Acapulco final and improved to 14-0 in 2022! Nadal defeated a soon-to-become world no.
1 Daniil Medvedev 6-3, 6-3 in the semi-final after a grueling battle that lasted two hours. Thus, the Spaniard advanced to his 128th ATP final and the fifth in Acapulco, seeking the fourth title in Mexico. Rafa bested Daniil for the fifth time in six encounters, prevailing in that epic Australian Open final and scoring a more convincing victory in Mexico.
The Spaniard denied 11 break points in back-to-back games of the second set and pushed the Russian’s second serve to the limits. Rafa grabbed three return games and sealed the deal in straight sets to arrange the title clash versus Cameron Norrie.
Nadal lost only nine points behind the initial shot in the opening set. He faced no break points and stole the rival’s serve once to move in front. Rafa placed a backhand down the line winner in the opening game to bring it home and landed another in game two for two break chances.
Rafael Nadal defeated Daniil Medvedev in straight sets in Acapulco.
Daniil saved them and avoided an early setback before holding with a backhand crosscourt winner for 1-1. Nadal closed the third game with a service winner after deuce and grabbed a break in the next one to forge the advantage.
Medvedev netted a backhand at the net right after serve to find himself 3-1 down. Nadal claimed four straight points in the fifth game from 30-0 down and closed it with an unreturned serve to extend the lead. The Russian held in the sixth game after deuces, and the Spaniard brought the next one home at love to remain in front.
Rafa served for the set at 5-3 and fired a service winner to bring it home after 47 minutes. Medvedev hit a double fault to face break chances at the beginning of the second set. He sprayed a forehand mistake and fell a set and a break down.
A three-time champion placed a forehand down the line for a hold at love in the second game, taking another step toward the finish line. Daniil found the rhythm on the return in the fourth game to create his first break chances.
Nadal stayed calm and defended four break points. The Spaniard closed the game with a service winner and opened a 3-1 advantage. Rafa worked even harder in a marathon game six, with nine deuces and seven break points up for grabs for Medvedev!
It was not to be for the Russian, though, squandering them and allowing the Spaniard to bring it home with a service winner after grueling 20 minutes. Rafa opened a 5-3 gap with an unreturned serve in game eight and broke Daniil from 40-15 down a few minutes later after the rival’s backhand mistake to advance into his fifth Acapulco final.
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