Friday 24 November 2017 / 05:28 AM

‘FED-AISSANCE’ CONTINUES WITH SHANGHAI SUCCESS AGAINST RAFA

Roger Federer’s renaissance, dubbed the ‘Fed-aissance’, has continued with a stunning straight-sets victory against Rafael Nadal in Shanghai.

Federer stunned Nadal 6-4, 6-3 in just one hour and 12 minutes to claim his second Shanghai Masters crown. He won his first in 2014.

The victory marks Federer’s 27th Masters title and his 94th ATP title overall, drawing him level with the great Ivan Lendl.

The Swiss maestro took charge from the beginning, dominating Nadal on serve and breaking the Spaniard in the opening game.

Federer never faced a break point of his own.

The world number two finished the match having won 83 percent of his first service points and blasting 10 aces, compared to Nadal’s four.

It caps off his fifth straight victory against the current world number one.

“Today I think you played a fantastic match, so well done,” Nadal said.

Since meeting at the Australian Open final to kick off the season, Federer and Nadal have met a further three times, with Federer winning all of those encounters.

Furthermore, Nadal hasn’t won a set off Federer since the first grand slam of the year. However, he still leads Federer with 23-15 wins overall.

He has also split the major titles with Federer this season, with both legends each winning two.

Federer claimed the Australian Open and Wimbledon trophies, while Nadal triumphed at the French Open and at the US Open, which effectively saw him return to the pinnacle of the rankings.

Both Nadal and Federer endured a difficult route to the Shanghai final this week. Nadal faced the fiery Fabio Fognini, before he tamed Grigor Dimitrov in three sets in the quarterfinals and defeated the challenge of big-serving Marin Cilic in the semis.

Federer overcame Alexandr Dolgopolov, Richard Gasquet and Juan Martin del Potro. The resurgent Argentine had earlier ended Federer’s hopes at Flushing Meadows.

But despite the loss Nadal will still maintain the number one spot when the refreshed rankings are released on Monday.

The Spaniard is currently more than 2300 points ahead of Federer, although the Swiss star is quickly closing the gap as the race to finish the season at the top heats up.

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Alyssia Varricchio

Alyssia Varricchio is a sports reporter, journalist and producer based in Melbourne.

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