Nadal, Pliskova prove their caliber

ROME: Rafael Nadal won a record 34th ATP Masters 1000 title with a 6-0 4-6 6-1 victory over Novak Djokovic in the Italian Open final on Sunday. The Spaniard, who had shared the record of 33 Masters titles with the Serbian world number one, warmed up for the defence of his French Open crown by securing his ninth Rome title.
 
Nadal got off to a flying start by whitewashing a shellshocked Djokovic in the opening set. It was the first time there has been a 6-0 set during a meeting between the two rivals. Djokovic took the second by breaking Nadal’s serve for the first time while leading 5-4, but the second seed responded in style by storming through the decisive set.
 
Karolina Pliskova ended Johanna Konta’s hopes of landing a first claycourt title with a 6-3 6-4 victory in the Italian Open final on Sunday. The Czech world number seven did not drop a single service game as she secured the third clay title of her career in one hour 25 minutes. British number one Konta claimed some big scalps on her way to the final, beating Grand Slam winners Sloane Stephens and Venus Williams as well as Madrid Open champion Kiki Bertens. However, she struggled to trouble the Czech on serve as Pliskova recorded her seventh win in eight meetings with Konta.
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