All the talk before the French Open final had been about Novak Djokovic being match sharper than Rafael Nadal, while Nadal had been complaining about the balls and the weather. Despite Nadal's phenomenal record on clay at Roland Garros, the impression given was that the final was there for the Serb's taking; it was his to lose. But lose he did, and in stunning fashion.
Nadal was at a level he hadn't been throughout the tournament. Perhaps Djokovic felt the strain of his five-set semi-final against Stefanos Tsitsipas. Whatever the reason, Djokovic was blown away 6-0 in the opening set. He fared little better in the second - 6-2 to Nadal - before looking as if he might change the momentum of the match in the third set. He did up to a point, but Nadal - with an ace - completed a remarkable three-set win, 7-5.
After the match, Djokovic was gracious in saying that "today you showed why you are the king of clay", while Nadal spread a message of hope: "We are facing one of the worst moments that we remember facing in this world, fighting against this virus. Keep going, stay positive. We will get through this and we will beat the virus soon."
This was Nadal's thirteenth French Open victory, his first having been in 2005, and he is now level with Roger Federer on twenty Grand Slam titles.