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Rafael Nadal ends Stefanos Tsitsipas’ Toronto run

Rafael Nadal of Spain, right, celebrates after defeating Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece during championships men's finals Rogers Cup tennis action in Toronto on Sunday, Aug. 12, 2018 in Montreal. (Frank Gunn / Associated Press)
Rafael Nadal of Spain, right, celebrates after defeating Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece during championships men's finals Rogers Cup tennis action in Toronto on Sunday, Aug. 12, 2018 in Montreal. (Frank Gunn / Associated Press)
Associated Press

TORONTO – Rafael Nadal won his 80th ATP World Tour title Sunday – and spoiled Stefanos Tsitsipas’ 20th birthday.

The top-ranked Nadal beat the unseeded Greek upstart 6-2, 7-6 (4) for his fourth Rogers Cup crown and fifth victory of the year. He has 33 ATP World Tour Masters 1000 titles.

“If you told me this two weeks ago I would not have believed it,” Nadal said. “It’s a great way to start the hard-court season. Winning in Toronto is so important. You don’t win Masters 1000s very often. It’s a very important victory for me and I’m very happy.”

The 32-year-old Spanish star also won the Rogers Cup in Toronto in 2008 and Montreal in 2005 and 2013. His previous four titles this year came on clay at the French Open, Monte Carlo, Barcelona and Rome. He also beat Tsitsipas in in the Barcelona final.

Tsitsipas reached the final by becoming the youngest player to beat four straight top-10 players in an event since the ATP World Tour was established in 1990. He began the run against seventh-seeded Dominic Thiem, then knocked off No. 9 Novak Djokovic, No. 2 Alexander Zverev and No. 4 Kevin Anderson.

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