In winning, Nadal also got revenge on Tsitsipas for his loss in the quarter-finals of the Australian Open back in February.
Nadal’s 87th career title did not come without an almighty fight, though, as Tsitsipas battled hard in pursuit of just his seventh ever title and a third victory over Nadal.
Tsitsipas saw off two championship points to break Nadal in the second set and after the Spaniard saved three break points on his service game, Tsitsipas held his own serve to force a second set tiebreak.
The Greek won that tiebreak 7-6, coming from 4-2 down to force a third set with the fans at the ATP 500 event treated to some sensational tennis from the two.
That meant for the first time since 2010 there was to be a deciding set in the Barcelona final, with it also the first time since 2008 that Nadal had been taken to three sets in the final of the event.
But Nadal rallied in the third set, one dominated by serve, and after over three hours and 38 minutes hours broke Tsitsipas and served out for the title despite his opponent’s spirit.