Nadal topples birthday boy Tsitsipas

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Rafael Nadal celebrates his 7-6 (7/3), 6-4 victory over Karen Khachanov in their semi-final at the Toronto Masters AFP / Vaughn Ridley

TORONTO (Reuters) – Rafael Nadal ended the red-hot run of Greek upstart Stefanos Tsitsipas with a 6-2 7-6(4) win on Sunday that gave the Spanish top seed his fourth Rogers Cup championship.

Tsitsipas, who was contending the Masters 1000 title on his 20th birthday after four consecutive wins over top-10 players in Toronto, threw all he had at Nadal but was ultimately unable to beat the world number one.

The Athens native did well to serve out at love in the first game but Nadal took over as he broke back in each of his next two chances before sealing the opening set in 34 minutes when Tsitsipas sent a routine forehand into the net.

Nadal, much to the dismay of the many flag-waving Greek supporters in attendance, denied a spirited challenge from the world number 27 in the second set to clinch a record-extending 33rd .

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