Nadal beats Isner in 2 sets for Cincinnati title

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Rafael Nadal. AP Photo

CINCINNATI — Rafael Nadal took advantage of his few openings Sunday against hard-serving American John Isner, grinding out a 7-6 (8), 7-6 (3) win in the Western & Southern Open that added another title to his sensational summer.

The 27-year-old Spaniard won in Montreal a week earlier and now has back-to-back hard-court championships for the first time in his illustrious career. He’d never even reached the finals in Cincinnati.

It was his fifth Masters title of the season, a career best. Nadal now is tied with Novak Djokovic for most Masters titles in a season since 1990. He’s 53-3 this year and has reached the finals in 11 of his last 12 tournaments.

Isner had one of his best weeks, knocking off the top-ranked Djokovic in the quarterfinals.

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