Roger Federer beat Rafael Nadal in five thrilling sets in Sunday's Australian Open final, earning the 18th Grand Slam title of his career

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January 29, 2017 04:30 AM

This article originally appeared on Sports Illustrated.

Roger Federer beat Rafael Nadal in five thrilling sets in Sunday’s Australian Open final, earning the 18th Grand Slam title of his career.

Federer, 35, prevailed 6–4, 3–6, 6–1, 3–6, 6–3 to win his first title in Melbourne since 2010. Federer hadn’t won a Grand Slam since Wimbledon in 2012.

In the decisive fifth set, Nadal broke Federer in the opening game. But Federer held serve the rest of the way and managed a crucial pair of breaks to win the match.

Federer served out the match at 5–3 in the fifth set despite Nadal having two break point opportunities. The match ended on a challenge from Nadal.

The tournament marked Federer’s return to competitive tennis after a six–month injury spell. Federer was seeded No. 17, beating the likes of Tomas Berdych, Kei Nishikori and Stan Wawrinka on his way to the final.

Federer’s 18 Grand Slam titles, including five at the Australian Open, are the most all–time. Nadal’s 14 are tied for second all–time.

 

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