Oh Happy Day, Dear Readers! Our Hero, Rafael Nadal, has won his first tournament of 2012! HOORAY! Victory came to him where it usually comes to him - Monte Carlo. It's Rafa's 8th Victory in a row on the clay at Monte Carlo. That's absurd. Rafa has won this event every year since 2005! WHAAAT? Yes, it true.
What makes winning the title even better is that he beat Novak Djokovic 6-3, 6-1 to end a seven-match final losing streak to the current world No. 1. Granted, Novak was not at his best this week as he dealt with the sudden passing of his grandfather with whom he was very close. Quite understandably, Novak was feeling mentally and emotionally drained. I was surprised to see him get through the last few rounds, as he was clearly struggling with grief. He had enough left in the tank to dispatch the rest of the field. Rafa was on a mission to win, however, and Novak just couldn't compete at his top level. I sympathize with Novak, but I'm happy Rafa played so well throughout the tournament and especially today. It's been a long time since he got the chance to bite a new trophy!
We'll have to see how this affects the next tournament that's about to start in Barcelona. Will Rafa's troublesome knee continue to not be too much trouble? Will Novak have enough time to regroup mentally and get back to top form? Will this win against Novak be the confidence boost Rafa needs to get back to being the dominant force in their rivalry? There are lots of interesting questions to be answered on tour this spring and summer! VAMOS!