December 7, 2023

Dimitrov netted a forehand in the next game to lose the advantage before Nadal landed a perfect backhand down the line winner that sent him 3-2 in front. The Bulgarian wasted two game points in the next one and suffered a break when his backhand found the net to find himself 4-2 down.

Nadal fended off two break chances in game seven, staying in front and serving for the set when Dimitrov held at love to reduce the deficit to 5-3.

The Spaniard sealed the opener with a comfortable hold in game nine, finishing the job in just under 50 minutes and hoping for more of the same in set number two.

There, Grigor held at 30 in the first game and grabbed a break a few minutes later thanks to a forehand winner at the net, surviving Nadal’s two game points to forge the advantage. The Spaniard pulled the break back with a forehand winner in game three and fended off a break chance in the next one with a mighty forehand, firing another to close the game and level the score at 2-2.

With momentum on his side, Rafa placed a drop shot winner to secure another break in game five and held with a service winner for a 4-2 advantage. Losing ground, the Bulgarian suffered a break at love in game seven when his backhand landed wide, allowing Rafa to serve for the triumph at 5-2.

From 30-0 down in that eighth game, Nadal won four straight points and moved over the top with a forehand crosscourt winner, securing the final spot and facing Taylor Fritz in the battle for the trophy.

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