World No.2 Rafael Nadal captured his first title of 2020, easily defeating unseeded Taylor Fritz in straight sets, 6-3, 6-2, in the final of the ATP Mexico Open on Saturday.
The 33-year-old Nadal, playing in his first tournament since losing in the quarter-finals at the Australian Open last month, didn’t drop a set all week and improved to 19-2 all-time at this event.
He nabbed his third Mexico Open title to go with victories in 2013 and 2005.
Nadal wasted no time figuring out Fritz’s game in the first career meeting between the two.
The 19-time Grand Slam winner made eight unforced errors and needed just one ace but it came in the final game of the second set to get to championship point.
Nadal closed it out with a blistering serve that handcuffed Fritz and gave Nadal his 85th career title.
Nadal ceded the world number one ranking to Novak Djokovic after the Australian Open, where the Serb won a record eighth title.
Nadal could have regained the top spot with a win in Acapulco, but he also needed Djokovic to fail to reach the final in this week’s Dubai event.
Nadal won the final eight points to take the first set.
He seized control by breaking Fritz’s serve in the ninth game to go up 5-4. He then served for the set, winning four straight points.