Madrid Flashback: Juan Carlos Ferrero downs Nicolas Massu and wins title

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Madrid Flashback: Juan Carlos Ferrero downs Nicolas Massu and wins title

Andre Agassi conquered the inaugural Madrid Masters event in 2002. A year later, the home star Juan Carlos Ferrero went all the way to lift the trophy, defeating Nicolas Massu 6-3, 6-4, 6-3 in two and a half hours. 2003 was Ferrero's career-best season, becoming world no.

1 after the Us Open and claiming Masters 1000 titles in Monte Carlo and Madrid. Juan Carlos celebrated his fourth and last Masters 1000 trophy in front of the home fans in 2003 at 23, having to wait until 2009 to lift another ATP crown!

Ferrero prevailed against Wayne Ferreira in the second round and worked hard against Felix Mantilla in the last 16. He won both tie breaks to find himself in the quarter-final, where he finally earned a more convincing victory over Paradorn Srichaphan.

The Spaniard toppled Roger Federer in the semi-final to continue where he left at the US Open and Bangkok, setting the title clash against Massu. Two baseliners needed two and a half hours to complete three sets without too many games, with Juan Carlos controlling the pace after fending off four out of five break chances.

The Spaniard mounted the pressure on the other side and moved over the top in straight sets to keep the trophy at home. Massu struggled on the first and second serve, playing against ten break chances and suffering five breaks to finish runner-up in his first Masters 1000 final.

Ferrero had more winners and fewer unforced errors, forcing more mistakes from his rival after dominating the quickest and more extended exchanges.

Juan Carlos Ferrero lifted the title at home in Madrid 2003.

The Spaniard grabbed a break in the second game when Nicolas sent a forehand long, extending the lead with an ace and wasting a couple of break opportunities that could have sent him 4-0 up.

Delivering one good hold after another, Ferrero hit a service winner to move 5-2 ahead before landing a forehand wide to offer Massu the first break chance in the ninth game. Juan Carlos saved it with a forehand winner, erased another and closed the opener with a service winner for 6-3.

The Spaniard broke at love in the second set's first game. He held at love in the next one and missed more chances on the return in game five, allowing Massu to reduce the deficit to 3-2. The Chilean survived another challenging game to remain one break behind before Ferrero held after deuce in game ten for 6-4 and another big step toward the title.

Like in the opening two sets, Juan Carlos forged an early lead in the first game of the third set. He secured another break to gain a 4-1 advantage before Massu pulled one break back to remain in contention. Juan Carlos experienced more troubles on serve in game eight, winning four points in a row to erase two break chances and sealing the deal with another break at 5-3 for his third notable title of the season.

Juan Carlos Ferrero Nicolas Massu