Tennis: Djokovic inflicts more pain on Nadal
Novak Djokovic maintained his unbeaten record in 2011 and landed his seventh title in an astonishing year by defeating Rafael Nadal 6-4 6-4 in the final of the Rome Masters yesterday.
The Serbian has now won 39 consecutive matches -- 37 this year -- and will head to the French Open next week as overwhelming favourite to add to the Australian Open crown he claimed in January.
Nadal has now lost in four finals this year to Djokovic -- in Indian Wells, Miami and last week on clay in Madrid, as well as Rome.
Former world No 1 Maria Sharapova warmed up in style for a crack at the French Open by cruising to her first title in a year with a 6-2 6-4 win over an an out-of-sorts Samantha Stosur at the Italian Open
Elsewhere, Irish duo Sam Barry and Barry King were celebrating yesterday after their first title success as a partnership on the world ranking circuit.
Limerick's Barry and Dubliner King prevailed in the doubles final in the ITF Futures outdoor clay court event in Adana, Turkey.
In only their third tournament as a partnership, Barry (19) and King (26), the No 2 seeds, romped to a 6-2 6-2 win over the unseeded pairing of Egypt's Mohamed Safwat and Syria's Issam Al Taweel.
This week, Barry and King will bid for more title glory in Samsun, close to Adana, where they take part in both singles and doubles events.