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Rafa Nadal beats Isner at Cincinnati for back-to-back hardcourt win
19 August 2013 @ 13:57

SPAIN'S Rafa Nadal has beaten the USA's John Isner on home turf to scoop up his first-ever Cincinnati title – one of the few left for him to win – and the 59th victory of his career.

Apologising to his rival for flattening him 7-6 (10-8) 7-6 (7-3), Mallorca-born Rafa will be bumped back up to world number two today (Monday) as a result of his win.

On a roll after beating Canada's Milos Raonic – again on home ground – to win the Montréal Rogers' Cup just a week ago, the 27-year-old saved two set points during a tight first set, levelling the match at 6-6 and went on to an 8-8 draw in the tie-break, which he won after his rival slammed the ball into the net.

Handing Rafa a set point on a plate, and his return falling short of the net, Isner lost the first set to the 'man from Manacor', but made him sweat for the privilege – and did not give him a much easier ride in set two.

Rafa's calculated forehands across the court kept Isner on his toes and two particularly energetic ones left him, by game 10, just two match points short of snatching up the title.

The American's two very precise backhands brought the match level at 5-5, a temporary setback for Rafa, but the Spaniard came through a second tie-break to snap up the 26th Masters victory of his career.


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