Photo: Rafa Nadal No. 1
Spanish world No. 1 Rafael Nadal hammered countryman David Ferrer 6-3, 6-2 Tuesday at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals, getting payback for the loss that Ferrer handed him three days ago at the Paris Masters.
The 27-year-old Spanish star, who is hoping to win the season-ending tournament for the first time, needed an hour and 14 minutes to put away his feisty 31-year-old opponent in Group A action.
“I played a little calmer than other the day,” Nadal said. “In my opinion, he didn’t have the chance to hit a winner as easy as he did three days ago.”
Ferrer beat Nadal 6-3, 7-5 at the Paris Masters last Saturday.
Nadal is now just one win away from locking up the No. 1 spot in the ATP rankings.
The Spanish star will have to beat one of his next two Group A rivals, Switzerland’s Stanislas Wawrinka and the Czech Republic’s Tomas Berdych. A loss by Serbia’s Novak Djokovic to any player in London will also put the No. 1 ranking in Nadal’s hands.
Nadal is trying to win the season-ending tournament for the first time.
Ferrer was battling both the No. 1 player and history in the match.
Ferrer’s win over Nadal on Saturday came after nine straight losses to his younger rival and he was trying to make it two straight victories for the first time since 2007.
Nadal, who has won 13 Grand Slam titles, now has a 21-5 head-to-head record against Ferrer.
“Rafael play good, he started very solid,” Ferrer said. “I didn’t play my game (throughout) the match. I made a lot of mistakes. I was not comfortable at the court. For me to beat Rafael, I need to be more focused.”
Nadal, who grabbed the No. 1 ranking from Djokovic last month, has had an extremely successful season, winning his eighth French Open title and second U.S. Open crown.