Rafael Nadal’s 6-4, 6-0 victory over David Goffin at the Barcelona Open on Saturday marks his 400th career clay-court win. He has won 44 consecutive sets on the surface, extending his own record.
Only three players in the history of tennis have earned more wins on the surface than Rafa. They are Guillermo Vilas (659-162), Manuel Orantes (502-150) and Thomas Muster (422-127). With a record of 400-35, Rafa has the best ever winning percentage on the surface. He has won a record 54 titles on the dirt.
After the match, Rafa said:
He started off brilliant, breaking me. But after the first break I think I’ve played good tennis.
Little by little, I’ve been raising the intensity to play my best match of the tournament against one of the strongest rivals.
Rafa slipped a break down at 0-2 to fourth seed Goffin in the first set but that was the only blip on his afternoon. Goffin saved two match points in the sixth game of the second set but a weary forehand went long on the third and Rafa celebrated with fists punched to the sky.
The world No. 1 will face Stefanos Tsitsipas in the final after the 19-year-old became the first Greek to reach an ATP World Tour final since Nicholas Kalogeropoulos in 1973.
Rafa, who will be playing in his 113th career final, won the Barcelona title in 2005-09, 2011-13 and 2016-17.
Sunday’s final will be the second of the season for Rafa as he primes his clay-court game for Roland Garros in a month.