Nadal sweeps to second Wimbledon trophy with dream victory (Night Lead)

July 5th, 2010 - 12:53 am ICT by IANS  

Rafael Nadal London, July 4 (DPA) Rafael Nadal completed another highlight in his glittering career, dominating Czech Tomas Berdych 6-3, 7-5, 6-4 Sunday to win a second Wimbledon title in three years in what the Spaniard called a dream performance on the grass.
The world number one claimed his eighth career title at the majors, to go with 2008 Wimbledon, 2009 Australian Open and five French Opens 2005-2008 and 2010.

“This is more than a dream for me,” said the Spaniard, who beat Roger Federer for his first honour in the 2008 final, a five-set thriller. “To play this way today was amazing for me.”

“Last year (because of a knee injury) I couldn’t be here. It was one of the toughest moments of my career. To have this trophy in my hand again is more than a dream.”

Berdych, the 12th seed playing his first Grand Slam final, could have been sleepwalking through the loss, which went for two hours, 12 minutes.

The Czech had knocked Federer out in the quarter-finals and Serb Novak Djokovic in the semi-finals. But he was unable to make a dent in the mighty Nadal game, failing to convert on four break chances while losing his serve at the business end of each of the three sets.

“It was a great two weeks for me,” said the 24-year-old, who only reached his first semi-final at a major a month ago in Paris. “But Nadal was really strong today.”

“He’s showed in the last few months what a champion he is. He deserved the win today.”

Berdych said that his quarter-final upset of six-time Wimbledon winner Federer, which will drop the Swiss back to third in the world for the first time in seven years, spurred him on.

“You can never say never. Beating Federer gave me confidence and extra power to be strong.

“I’ll be back again, who knows what could happen. I want to continue the hard work with my team and earn some better and better results.”

Nadal’s comprehensive victory was his seventh in succession against Berdych. The Spaniard has now won two of the three majors this season after lifting another Roland Garros title in June.

Nadal stands 47-5 on the season with five titles - he now has 41 overall - after going 10 months without one until starting the spring clay season with another Monte Carlo crown.

The Spaniard got the measure of Berdych mid-way through the opening set, breaking the Czech for 4-3 and engineering his way to the early lead with a second break at 6-3.

The start of the second produced a long game, with Nadal saving three break points to hold. He then decoded the Berdych serve in the final game, breaking to take a two-set lead from the Czech’s forehand wide.

In the third, Nadal kept Berdych under pressure throughout, forcing the Czech into errors in the tenth game and profiting from the ensuing match point, which he converted with a whipping forehand winner before falling onto his back in joy.

“I’ll put this trophy in the bedroom near to the other one,” said the new champion. “This was my dream and I’ve done it.”

“Tomas is having an amazing season. He had a very good event here. I’m sorry for today, but I wish you the best of luck for the rest of the year.”

The Spaniard will lead number two Djokovic by nearly 400 ranking points on the ATP, with Federer down to third for the first time since 2003.

The winner has now claimed his last 14 Wimbledon matches and becomes the only Spaniard in history to win twice at the All England club after contesting his fourth consecutive final.

“It’s always been tough for Spanish players to play here. But we are doing better and I’m very satisfied for that,” said Nadal.

Berdych failed in his bid to become just the second Czech men’s singles champion at Wimbledon after Jan Kodes, who took the title in 1973. He was the first from his nation to play for the title since Ivan Lendl in 1987.

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