The Spaniard breezed past Dominic Thiem in straight sets at Roland Garros as he continued his dominance of the French Open with a record 11th success. He's already made history. Nadal's "La Decima" was his 10th French Open, and he managed it without dropping a set throughout the tournament.
"Along with Nadal, he is literally still the world of men's tennis, and to not play a Grand Slam on a surface that we play for two months, on which everybody has grown up on, to not come to the showpiece of claycourt tennis, it hurts the tournament, it hurts professional tennis, it hurts men's tennis".
"It's one of those days", Shapovalov said after the match.
"I played my best match of the tournament", Nadal told the crowd afterward.
Not only did Nadal's win pull him another title closer to Federer's all-time Slam record, but it also tied him for the most finals appearances (11) at one major, with all of Federer's coming at Wimbledon. "I know I've had an unbelievable career so I want to keep fighting for these things".
There was still fight in Thiem, though, and he had a break point when Nadal served at 4-2 ― a game in which the Spaniard was warned for taking too long to serve.
But he could not match Nadal's point-by-point consistency and intensity on Sunday. Nadal, Federer, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray - the so-called Big Four - have dominated the men's game to such a degree that Thiem is only the second player now younger than 28 to have reached a major singles final.
Why? Nadal was 95-0 when capturing the opener on clay in the best of five format.
Nadal's latest version of the watch is the RM27-03, valued at $725,000, according to Forbes. He is now three grand slam titles short of Roger Federer, the pair having shared the past six slam titles between them. Since his first French Open appearance in 2005, Nadal has gone 86-2 with one withdrawal. The Spaniard got early breaks in the second and third set, to keep a battling, but baffled, Thiem at bay. I am not much anxious about the future.
The Austrian - competing in his first grand slam final after a pair of semifinal showings in Paris - needed to win the first set to have any realistic opportunity of ending Nadal's reign.
Umpire Damien Dumusois handed out one time-violation warning but never docked a first serve. "I think he is really good".
If Thiem is, as he is widely regarded, the second best clay-court player in the world then he probably has a few more of these pummellings to look forward to at least until Nadal, 32, finally calls it a day.
In Nadal's case, that way now leads on to the grass, where his last appearance in the quarter-finals of Wimbledon came seven years ago.
He is now entered to play the Queen's Club tournament next week.