NEW YORK (AP) — Novak Djokovic held on to beat defending champion Rafael Nadal 6-2, 6-4, 6-7 (3), 6-1 Monday in a final filled with lengthy, mesmerizing points to win his first U.S. Open championship and third Grand Slam trophy of the year.
The top-ranked Djokovic improved to 64 wins from 68 matches with 10 tournament titles, one of the greatest seasons in the history of men’s tennis — or any sport.
And he’s unbeaten against Nadal in 2011 — 6-0, all in finals, including at Wimbledon in July. Djokovic also won the Australian Open in January, and is the sixth man in the Open era to collect three major titles in one year.
In the third set, Djokovic served for the match at 6-5 before Nadal broke, and after the tiebreaker, Djokovic was treated for an aching back. But Djokovic ruled the fourth set.