Roger Federer and Rafa Nadal's rivalry in numbers

Roger Federer and Rafa Nadal's rivalry in numbers

When they first met on Key Biscayne, in the third round of the 2004 tournament, Nadal was a long-haired, little-known 17-year-old with big biceps.

Federer had to make a titanic effort to qualify for the final of the Masters 1000 in Miami. This means that Federer has now won the last four encounters against Rafa, a career hot streak for the Swiss.

Although Major League Baseball's 2017 regular season is now officially underway, the world of tennis may have stolen some of the spotlight on Sunday afternoon as the heralded Roger Federer has captured yet another title.

This was only the second time that Federer had faced Kyrgios, with the Australian running out a narrow victor in that meeting in Madrid back in 2015.

Roger Federer denied Rafael Nadal a first Miami Open title as he powered his way to a straight-sets victory in Sunday's final. This was his 26th Masters title and he is now the first three-time victor on the ATP World Tour this season.

"The dream continues", Federer told the crowd in Miami after the match.

"I'm happy we're both here together, and I enjoy playing against you", Federer said, upon receiving his trophy and winners' check for just over $1 million. Federer had earlier beaten his arch-rival 6-4, 3-6, 6-1, 3-6, 6-3 in the final of the Australian Open in the last week of January. "Hopefully, I will play the French, and then for me that's when the season really starts".

Nadal was expectedly gutted to lose in the final and said, "I think that I was close".

"When I'm healthy and I'm feeling good, I can produce tennis like this".

The 30-year-old will resume his campaign at the Monte Carlo Masters in two weeks time, which is played on clay courts - his preferred surface.

Federer said he doesn't plan to play any clay tournaments until the French Open because "I'm not 24 anymore".

Nadal was outplayed by the Swiss in their most recent meeting in Indian Wells but the world No7 is unfazed by that result.

Federer ended a four-and-a-half-year wait to win his 18th Grand Slam, becoming the oldest victor of one of his sport's most prized events in 43 years with his triumph in Melbourne. "I'm sure you're going to tear me to pieces over there".

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