Spaniard claims only his second title of the season after grinding out a 7-6 (7/3), 6-3 victory over Viktor Troicki
Stuttgart: Rafael Nadal earned his second title of the season and his fourth on grass as he defeated Serb Viktor Troicki 7-6 (7/3), 6-3 yesterday to become the first man to triumph on both clay and turf at the Stuttgart Open.
Rafael Nadal poses on the winner's car, a Mercedes AMG GT S, with the trophy after his win at Stuttgart. Pic/AFP
The Spanish top seed set another minor record, as he won the inaugural grass edition after taking clay trophies here in 2005 and 2007. Stuttgart made the switch to grass starting with this edition as part of the new Wimbledon pre-season.
Nadal's 66th career title marked his second in 2015 after claiming a trophy on South American clay last February.
Nadal's victory boosted him to 33-10 this season as he prepares for what he hopes is a better second half of 2015. "I'm not bothered by the expectations of others," said the 29-year-old. "I'm only motivated by my own goals, There is no pressure on me.
It's fantastic to win here on grass after winning on clay. But I've been gaining confidence over the past month and a half after a very poor first three and a half months of this season.
"I've been feeling my game better since after my first match in Monte Carlo (mid-April). It was mentally tiring for me to play tennis in the first part of the year. I was not feeling comfortable on court.
"I was not able to play the way that I wanted. I didn't feel confident. But that has been changing and my focus now if to prepare as best as I can for Wimbledon."
No of titles Rafael Nadal has won on grass after his win at Stuttgart, He has won Wimbledon twice and Queen's Club title in 2008
No of titles Nadal has won in Stuttgart. Previously he had clinched the title in the German city in 2005 and 2007
Nadal's win-loss record after making it to the final. Stuttgart was the 95th final of the Spaniard's career