Rafael Nadal Ties Jimmy Connors for Third-Most Major Wins in Men’s Tennis History

Rafael Nadal has tied an American tennis legend…

The 31-year-old Spanish tennis star, the defending champion, has advanced to the fourth round of the French Open on Saturday with a 6-3, 6-2, 6-2 win against Richard Gasquet, improving to 16-0 against the Frenchman.

Rafael Nadal

Nadal recorded his 233rd major match win, matching Jimmy Connors for the third-most in men’s tennis history.

Gasquet trailed 5-0 in the first set before winning the next three games and moving 30-0 ahead on Nadal’s serve.

It was only a brief rally, as Nadal responded in his usual clinical way.

He streaked ahead 4-0 in the second set and did the same in the third before Gasquet finally held serve after a long fifth game. After earning applause from Nadal following a superb cushioned drop shot at the net, he ended that game with an ace.

Nadal, whose winning streak against Gasquet dates to 2004, clinched victory on his first match point when Gasquet chopped a backhand long.

“He respects me,” Gasquet told L’Equipe newspaper before Saturday’s match. “But in the meantime, he often gives me a beating.”

Nadal is chasing a record-extending 11th title at Roland Garros. He next faces unseeded German Maximilian Marterer in their first career meeting.

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