Rafael Nadal shared a brilliant moment with a young fan that left him cracking up before the Rogers Cup final.
Nadal won his 80th ATP World Tour title on Monday morning and spoiled the 20th birthday celebrations of Stefanos Tsitsipas.
The top-ranked Nadal beat the unseeded Greek 6-2 7-6 (7-4) for his fourth Canadian Open crown and fifth title of the year.
But it wasn’t all business for Nadal as he experienced a number of light-hearted moment pre and post-match.
The first of those moments came at the coin toss when a young fan didn’t want to leave his side.
The young man had the pleasure of helping with the toss, before getting to have his photo taken with Nadal and Tsitsipas.
But just as he was starting to lap up the limelight, he was just as quickly asked to leave, with Nadal and Tsitsipas about to have a photo on their own.
As the players moved in and posed for the photo, the youngster refused to budge, confused as to why he had to make his way off the court.
Nadal had to explain to him that it was time to go, cracking out in a huge smile and patting the boy on the head.
‘I want to see what Tiger’s doing’
The other light-hearted moment came after Nadal had secured the victory, as court-side cameras captured him rushing off-court to check his phone.
The Spaniard was tapping and scrolling for a good few seconds before he completed his customary signing of the camera lens.
Noticing the cameraman lingering for longer than he should have, Nadal explained what he was doing.
“I want to see what Tiger’s doing!” he said into the camera, referencing Tiger Woods’ final-round charge at the PGA Championship.
Woods finished up two shots short of a 15th major crown, with Brooke Koepka grabbing the title.
Nadal switches focus to US Open, not Cincinnati
The 32-year-old later announced that he would skip the Masters tournament in Cincinnati this week to rest and get ready for the US Open, which begins on August 27.
“No other reason than personally taking care of my body and trying to keep as healthy as I feel now,” Nadal said in a statement.
And so a “Big Four” reunion will have to wait for at least a few more weeks.
Nadal, Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray haven’t played in the same tournament in more than a year.
The other three are scheduled to play in Cincinnati this week.
Rafa joins exclusive club with 80th career title
Nadal’s win in Toronto was notable for a number of reasons.
The victory made the 32-year-old just the fourth player to win 80 titles in the Open Era, joining Jimmy Connors (109), Roger Federer (98) and Ivan Lendl (94) in the rare air.
“This week has been fantastic. To receive this trophy means everything to me,” he said.
“To have the support of all of you the whole week, that’s why I’m waking up every morning and trying to go on court practising with the highest passion possible.”
His previous four titles this year came on clay at the French Open, Monte Carlo, Barcelona – where he beat Tsitsipas in the final – and Rome.
“He was normal like all of us and he managed to become this beast, this monster that he is today,” Tsitsipas said.
“It’s true … that’s how you feel when you play against him. I need to work much more and hopefully I can reach his level one day.”