Rafael Nadal crosses Taylor Fritz to win the Acapulco title
LOS ANGELES: World No. 2 Rafael Nadal He captured his first 2020 title, easily defeating seedless Taylor Fritz in straight sets, 6-3, 6-2, at the end of the ATP Mexico Open on Saturdays.
Nadal, 33, playing in his first tournament since losing in the quarterfinals at the Australian Open last month, did not lose a set all week and improved to 19-2 in this event.
He earned his third Mexican Open title with victories in 2013 and 2005.
Nadal wasted no time discovering Fritz's game in the first race meeting between the two.
The 19-time Grand Slam winner made eight unforced errors and only needed an ace, but arrived in the final game of the second set to reach the point of the championship.
Nadal closed it with a scorching service that handcuffed Fritz and gave Nadal his 85th career title.
Nadal yielded the world ranking number one to Novak Djokovic after the Australian Open, where the Serbian won an eighth record title.
Nadal could have regained first place with a victory in Acapulco, but he also needed Djokovic not to reach the final in this week's event in Dubai.
Djokovic extended his winning streak to 21 games by winning Stefanos Tsitsipas 6-3, 6-4 early on Saturday to lift the Dubai trophy.
Nadal won the last eight points to take the first set. He took control by breaking Fritz's service in the ninth game to climb 5-4. He then served for the set, earning four consecutive points.
At the set point, he hammered a service that Fritz barely recovered. That prepared an air strike for Nadal that he kept very well.
Nadal broke Fritz twice in the second set, including the fifth game to climb 3-2. He broke Fritz again to take a 5-4 lead and then served the game.
Nadal has now won a title for 17 consecutive years.
In the women's final, seventh seed Heather watson captured his first WTA title in three years achieving a 6-4, 6-7 (6/8), 6-1 victory over a Canadian teenager Leylah Fernandez .
The persistent Fernandez, of Filipino and Ecuadorian descent, survived nine championship points before finally succumbing to the British in the two-hour and 46-minute marathon.