MELBOURNE, Australia -- Beforehand, it was billed by many to be the most important Grand Slam match ever played. After five breathtaking sets, it did not disappoint -- at all.
In the end, Federer completed his unprecedented comeback by downing Nadal 6-4, 3-6, 6-1, 3-6, 6-3, adding an 18th Grand Slam title to the Swiss' name. READ MORE
The numbers crunch:
This was the ninth major final meeting between Nadal and Federer, the most in men's history.
Federer became the oldest man to win a Grand Slam title since Ken Rosewall in the 1972 Australian Open.
This was the first time in Federer's Grand Slam history he's played three or more five-set matches in a single tournament.
Federer also became just the fourth player in the Open era to defeat four top-10 seeds in a Grand Slam.
What a match!
Tennis fans and other sporting stars from around the globe couldn't take their eyes off the historic match, taking to social media to show their delight.
Everyone stop right now .. take 6 months off. Come back. Win ..... can't believe what I watched. Congrats to my friend @rogerfederer— andyroddick (@andyroddick) January 29, 2017
Wow, what an @AustralianOpen the two GOATs holding the trophy and historic finals. 2017 is gonna be a fun year for tennis.— James Blake (@JRBlake) January 29, 2017
Vamos Rafa!! 💪🤞— David Ferrer (@DavidFerrer87) January 29, 2017
Roger, the CHAMPION 🙌🏻 Well deserved! I'm so happy for you. Congrats to this epic win 🏆@rogerfederer— Angelique Kerber (@AngeliqueKerber) January 29, 2017
Fed you are THE man! 💖🙌🏼😭🏆#AusOpen— Shelby Rogers (@Shelby_Rogers_) January 29, 2017
Thank you both, don't you ever quit tennis!! GRANDEEE ROGER 🙌 So inspiring!!— Juan M. del Potro (@delpotrojuan) January 29, 2017
What a great and amazing match to wake up for. Thank you Roger, thank you Rafa. @AustralianOpen— Milos Raonic (@milosraonic) January 29, 2017
So happy for @rogerfederer 😁— Genie Bouchard (@geniebouchard) January 29, 2017
My face watching this match 😍😍😍. #AusOpen— Laura Robson (@laurarobson5) January 29, 2017
Federer and Nadal should just play every day, forever.— Paolo Bandini (@Paolo_Bandini) January 29, 2017
I just hope that you guys never leave us..Bravo @rogerfederer Today's match was so inspiring..❤— Feliciano López (@feliciano_lopez) January 29, 2017
Congrats Serena-Venus, Roger and Rafa. What a way to start the Tennis year, can't wait to see what else unfolds this year #exciting #23 #18— Tommy Haas (@TommyHaas13) January 29, 2017
This is tennis 🎾❤! Thanks so much guys for everything you showed us during all this years! pic.twitter.com/6xjE2SvRYW— Fernando Verdasco (@FerVerdasco) January 29, 2017
Wow. What. A. Match.— ivo karlovic (@ivokarlovic) January 29, 2017
With out a doubt best I have ever seen Fedfan hit his bachand vs Vamos-Rafa hitting hard and flat especially on the return of serv— Brad Gilbert (@bgtennisnation) January 29, 2017
#AusOpen 😳🙈👀— kylie minogue (@kylieminogue) January 29, 2017
A touching tribute
The only thing that came close to rivaling the brutal, high-quality encounter was the heartfelt postmatch trophy presentation.
A defeated Nadal praised his great rival for his stunning comeback while Federer wished he could have called the match a draw.
Oh, and what a wonderful sight this was with great Aussie legend Rod Laver sandwiched in between the two finalists.