Nadal pulls ahead for the first time

Rafa Nadal takes over the men’s all-time Grand Slam singles lead, winning his 21st by taking the title in extraordinary fashion—a nearly six-hour match, coming back from two sets down against the hottest player in the draw, Daniil Medvedev.

This isn’t the first five-set win Nadal’s had in a major final, but it’s the only one where he spent this much time playing from behind. Apart from that, apart from winning a second Career Slam at age 35, apart from the French Open looming … Nadal exorcised his Melbourne demons. Imagine stepping top to the line, up a break, to win an historical major, knowing the last time you were in the same position on the same court you failed … and then serving it out a second time. Vamos.

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