Rafael Nadal claimed his fourth US Open title after edging a gutsy Daniil Medvedev in a five-set epic to move to within one Grand Slam of Roger Federer’s all-time record.
The Spanish second seed led by two sets and a break before Medvedev, playing in his first major final, launched an astonishing comeback. Nadal eventually ran out 7-5 6-3 5-7 4-6 6-4 winner against the fifth seed after four hours and 50 minutes of breathtaking tennis.
Medvedev is one of the hottest players in men’s tennis having reached a fourth straight final of a hard-court tournament, and somehow battled back from two sets and a break down before Nadal finally extinguished the Russian’s game in the fifth to secure a 19th Grand Slam.
An exhausted Nadal was in tears as he sat in his chair waiting for the post-match presentations.
He admitted: “It’s been one of the most emotional nights in my tennis career. It was an amazing final, since I had the match under control more or less. Tonight everybody saw why he is number four in the world.
“The way he was able to fight, to change the rhythm of the match, was incredible.”
The 33-year-old Spaniard now knows the door is open for him to overhaul Federer and become the all-time major record holder.
Here is how the win draws him closer to Roger Federer