Most Titles At An ATP Event? Rafael Nadal Is Your Leader With 10 At Monte Carlo

by Tom Gainey | April 23rd, 2017, 11:49 am

Rafael Nadal made history today becoming the first man in the Open Era to win 10 titles at a single event. Nadal rolled countryman Albert Ramos-Vinolas to capture his 10th Monte Carlo title, an extraordinary achievement.

“It is really unbelievable,” Nadal said. “Win 10 times in such an important event like Monte-Carlo is something difficult to describe the feeling. Every year have been a different feeling. At the same time is always a unique moment every time I have this trophy with me.

“Is a little bit of luck, lot of things together should happen to made this 10th title in an event like Monte-Carlo. I feel lucky to keep playing tennis, being healthy all those years, to compete in one of the most beautiful events of the year, without a doubt.”

And he’ll try to go 10 at Barcelona next week and then at the French Open.

10 Rafael Nadal Monte-Carlo 2005–12, 16–17
9 Rafael Nadal French Open 2005–08, 10–14
9 Rafael Nadal Barcelona 2005–09, 11–13, 16
8 Guillermo Vilas Buenos Aires 1973–76, 77 (2), 79, 82
8 Roger Federer Halle 2003–06, 08, 13–15
7 Pete Sampras Wimbledon 1993–95, 97–00
7 Roger Federer Wimbledon 2003–07, 09, 12
7 Roger Federer Dubai 2003–05, 07, 12, 14–15
7 Roger Federer Cincinnati 2005, 07, 09–10, 12, 14–15
7 Roger Federer Basel 2006–08, 10–11, 14–15
7 Rafael Nadal Rome 2005–07, 09–10, 12–13

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20 Comments for Most Titles At An ATP Event? Rafael Nadal Is Your Leader With 10 At Monte Carlo

Nits Says:

Above stats show how much good both of them are

Willow Says:

^Absolutely ^ ….

DC Says:

Amazing feat By Nadal.
I honestly never expected him to last so long, but he’s silenced his scpetics who doubted his longetivity in the sport.He took his breaks for treatments and so on, however he’s been contributing to the record books regularly.
If he wins the FO this year, with the extra confidence he would get, he will be in a position to challenge Feds 18 Grand Slams.

skeezer Says:

Grat achievement, congrats Rafa on 10 MC’s.
More impressive to me is his NINE FO’s. Why? It’s a Slam. And he is looking good to get 10.

Kimberly Says:

well at last a title to reward Rafa for what has really been an overall solid start to the year. There has been glimpses of amazing, hoping for more to come. The jack Sock match in Mimai was the player I want to see more of!

Daniel Says:

Nadal back at #5 on rankings, solid #2 at race and will go with Wawa and Fed fighting for #4 seed in RG.

With Fed out if he performers better than last year he can overcome him before RG. He is 900 pts behind. Can gain in Barcelona this week and will have to do better in Madrid and Rome than his semis and QF. Very doable with Andy and Djoko (both who beat him in those events last year) faltering.

Humble Rafa Says:

I know I have made it in life when Skeeze congratulates me. He may starve his cats for a week because of my win but his words mean a lot to me.

Tony N Says:

While this is a phenomenal open-era record (since 1968) by Nadal, there are a few things to consider to keep things in context. It was harder to win this tournament in the past:
(a) up until 2006 the Monte Carlo final was best of five sets (sine 2007 it has been best of three sets).
(b) in certain years until 2006 the top players also had to play up to six rounds to win the event (since top players got a bye in the first round only from 2007). Nadal has benefitted from the easing of tournaments conditions for top players (in 2006, Team Nadal was one of the loudest lobbyists for the changes mentioned in (a) and (b) ). If Nadal had to keep playing under the pre-2007 tougher conditions, would he not have burned out sooner and winning multiple titles in the same event like his predecessors Borg, Wilander, Muster, Kuerten, Ferrero, etc.?
(c) before the year 2000, the clay court surface conditions tended be relatively more inconsistent from year to year (e.g., on the blue clay of 2012 Madrid and 2007 Hamburg, Nadal had a harder time adapting when the clay was not within certain narrow specifications that he prefers). Nadal has benefitted from relatively more homogenous conditions on clay, not only within the same tournament but across the other major clay Masters events and French Open.

As well, this has been the only non-mandatory Masters tournament since 2009, so several good players have tended to skip it or treat it as an early clay warm up event.

Some of these factors do not apply to the French Open.

Tony N Says:

In all-time tennis history since 1877, the following players have won a particular tournament at least 10 times:

17 titles:
– Herbert Roper Barrett Suffolk Championships 1898-1899, 1902, 1904-1921 (the Suffolk Championships tournament was England’s second-oldest tennis competition, after The Championships, Wimbledon. Barrett was a three-time Wimbledon finalist.)

16 titles:
– Dan Maskell British Pro Championship 1928–1935, 1938–1950

12 titles:
– Jean Borotra Coupe Albert Canet 1921, 1923-1926, 1929-1933, 1935, 1938 [95]
-Jean Borotra French Covered Court Championships 1922, 1924, 1926-1927, 1929-1933, 1938, 1947

11 titles:
– Jean Borotra British Covered Court Championships 1926–1932, 1933, 1935, 1938, 1948–1949
– Eric Sturgess South African Championships 1939, 1940, 1946, 1948, 1949, 1950, 1951, 1952, 1953, 1954, 1957

10 titles:
– Sydney Howard Smith Welsh Championships 1896-1902, 1904-1906
– William Johnston Pacific Coast Championships (aka San Jose) 1913, 1914, 1916, 1917, 1919, 1921, 1922, 1925, 1926, 1927
– Rafael Nadal Monte Carlo Masters 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2016, 2017

JaimeMiro Says:

Tony N
The man did just win the tournament prior to those changes from 2005, up until 2007 or 06.? I do agree that top players do benefit from getting a bye in the first round, which has always rubbed me the wrong way. That said, it doesn’t only aid one player, the fact of the matter is that Rafa on clay is almost unplayable when at his best. He’s definitely lost a step, and is still playing at a high level at the moment. Murray and Djokovic having a bad year means we’ll not see him get tested as much. Add to that the usual suspects in Stan, Cilic, and Kei – ( due to injury), have been woeful.

Danica Says:

Tony N,
While feats of the former greats are laudable, I don’t think comparing them with the achievements of today’s players is fair. I know you just put the info here in order to look at Rafa’s feat in a broader context of tennis overall history, but in pre-Open era, there was only so many countries that actually had a tennis tradiotion. France, USA, GB, Australia (in random order). Those were the only powers for a long time. Nowadays, tennis is a massively popular sport world over and achieving 10 tournament wins among the pool of many acomplished players, is HUGE proof of one’s consistency on a highest level. So, kudos to Rafa. He had a rough patch due to sickness and injuries but it seems that he is on a winning path again. Congrats to him, his team and fans!

Tony N Says:

When a player such as Nadal is on a shortlist of players considered for ‘greatest of ALL time’ (i.e., greatest in tennis history between 1877 and today), it necessary to evaluate his achievement against the broader context of all tennis history. For that reason, Federer’s 18 major titles are compared against all players since 1877. At every Wimbledon since 2012, knowledgeable writers portray Federer as tied with both Pete Sampras 7 titles in the 1990s as well as Willie Renshaw’s 7 titles in the 1880s.

There was more diversity in the pre-Open era (before 1968 Bournemouth / French Open) than many people presume. For example, at 1921 Wimbledon, Herbert Roper Barret lost his fourth round 6-3, 6-3, 6-1 to Japanese player Zenzo Shimidzu. In the semifinal, the Japanese player lost a close five setter to a Spaniard, who in turn lost the final to a South African player (who thus won the all-comers tournament), who in turn lost to USA’s great Bill Tilden in the challenge round.

RZ Says:

Good chance for Rafa to end up with three 10-ers this year.

Markus Says:

Tony N. nice read about some historical perspective on the game. However, it should not detract the tiniest bit on the most recent achievement by Nadal. History is interesting but an infinitesimal amount of parameters that cannot be adjusted to validate comparison due to different times and different circumstances renders any comparison and conclusion moot and invalid. Let us just give each of those players their due, they are all great and each having accomplished something unmatched during their own times.

gonzalowski Says:

Tony N,
interesting information, but… Suffolk Championships ???
then you should note about my cousin, Alfredo, 11 times won the La Marina camping tennis championship. He’s a leftie, by the way.

Tony N Says:

JaimeMiro: Nadal’s first two Monte Carlo titles (2005, 2006) were achieved under some of the old conditions (no first round bye for top players; best of five set finals) that previous generations had to play under. The changes started from 2007 benefited Nadal’s generation (including Djokovic and Murray, which and partly explain why they won so many Masters titles relative to previous generations). For example, Federer – who started playing ATP events in 1998 — played for four to five more years under the old conditions than Nadal did (under the old conditions, Federer won 12 titles from 16 Masters finals up until 2006, which is nearing the end of his peak years 2004 to 2007). With respect to Monte Carlo, the other multiple winners in the open era all were unable to win more than 2 or 3 titles (Borg, Nastase, Muster, Lendl, Wilander, Bruguera, Kuerten, Vilas, Ferrero) – was it partly due to these factors? While I agree that Nadal – as the greatest clay courter of all (yes, Steve Tignor, even more than Chris Evert) — would probably have won more 3 Monte Carlo titles, would he have been able to win 10 titles had the old tougher conditions remained? Team Nadal lobbied in 2006 for the changes, probably because they have been planning to maximize Nadal’s longevity from the very beginning. On another factor, Nadal still benefitted in 2005/6 from the relative homogenization and consistency in quality of clay court surfaces that Bjorn Borg, for example, did not have in the 1970s. If Nadal had to play under Borg’s tougher conditions, would he have been able to win 10 titles? I doubt it.

Markus, interesting perspective. However, most of those serious experts who engage in serious analytical discussions about “the greatest of all time” in any sport would beg to differ with your presumption that such comparisons and conclusions would be “moot and invalid” regardless of the number of parameters across different times and circumstances.

Tony N Says:

I appreciate that you and your left cousin Alfredo competed against each other in 11 finals in the La Marina camping tennis championship. But that tournament was started relatively recently to entertain drunk campers.
On the other hand, the Suffolk championship began 10 years before the Monte Carlo tournament. The Suffolk championship began in the late 1880s at Hurts Hall Park, Saxmundham. It was England’s second-oldest tennis competition, after the Championships Wimbledon. It moved to Framlingham soon after the Second World War.

lakie Says:

Recently I visited a country which had once been under British Rule. There’s a Club there started in the early 1800s. Some British guy won the Club championship 12 years in a row. According to Tony N this unknown guy’s achievement will surpass Nadal’s! Ha ha ha!!!

lakie Says:

…Club tennis championship …

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