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30 Jan 2017 - 7:33 AM  UPDATED 30 Jan 2017 - 7:33 AM

Roger Federer has won his 18th Grand Slam title after defeating Rafael Nadal in the Australian Open men’s singles final.

The 35-year-old Swiss champion defeated the Spaniard in five sets (6-4 3-6 6-1 3-6 6-3) to claim his 5th Australian Open.

Federer is now the first man in history to have won five or more titles at three different Grand Slam events, with five Australian Opens, fives US Opens and seven Wimbledons.

This particular title however is even more remarkable, given his previous title was at Wimbledon in 2012 and he took the second half of last year off due to a knee injury.

Federer says this victory is perhaps the sweetest of them all.

The match itself lasted more than three and a half hours.

Federer won the last five games and the match point was decided thanks to a Hawk-Eye challenge.

Federer jumped into the air in celebration, consoled his opponent, and then broke down in tears.

He says winning against one of his oldest rivals in Nadal made the win extra special.

For Nadal, it had been an incredible 31 months since he passed a quarter-final at a major.

Disappointed he couldn’t win the final, Nadal says the five-setter semi final he played against Grigor Dimitrov played a factor in the loss.

Nadal also echoed the sentiments of Federer, in that he was honoured to play a final in one of tennis’s greatest rivalries.

Federer is now the oldest male in the professional era to win a Grand Slam since Ken Rosewall at the US Open in 1970.

The fairy tale victory may not even be his last, with the Swiss great refusing to rule out a comeback next year.

Tournament director Craig Tiley says it was the dream final for the Australian Open.