Rafa Nadal will arrive at Roland Garros, which begins on Sunday, May 30, dressed as a hunter. There is no final on earth that has escaped him since he lost the Madrid Open in July 2015. With Sunday's at the 1000 Masters in Rome, He has raised his arms in the last 16 he has played. As if time was not primed with him, on the verge of 35 years (he will meet them on June 3), he has equaled the spectacular streak he achieved at the start of his career. When between the 2004 Sopot titles with which he opened his record and the defeat against Roger Federer in Hamburg 2007, he also chained 16 wins in finals on the ocher carpet.

“Facing Rafa on the ground is the last challenge,” Novak Djokovic has repeated on several occasions. He checked it again in the Foro Italico, where he fell by 7-5, 1-6 and 6-3. Nadal has beaten the Serb in his last five matches on clay, a positive momentum that can be critical in Paris. But In the final of Roland Garros 2020 the Spaniard passed over the Belgrade (6-0, 6-2 and 7-5), while in Rome Nole was much closer.


“In that final at Roland Garros, Djokovic avoided the fight, and yet in Rome he won 20 of the 25 points played from more than nine strokes. It has been positive for him and it cannot be said that he will never reach Nadal “, the former tennis player Arnaud Clément warned yesterday. and now a Eurosport commentator, in L'Équipe.

“I must confirm the good feelings, I have improved but I have to improve more and be able to do this every day, that gives me confidence. I need to work, relax mentally and do it well, “Nadal explained about his plans until Roland Garros. Two days of disconnection in Mallorca and on the track again. After the possible 14th title at Roland Garros there is also the sorpasso to Roger Federer, who this week returns to earth in Geneva, at the top of tennis with 21 large.

Yes, the title in Rome, although it serves Nadal to cut points with respect to Djokovic (he loses 400) he does not contribute more to his locker (with the remodeled 'pandemic' ranking and his victory in 2019 maintains 1,000) so it does not reach Daniil Medvedev in the number two of the world rankings. Therefore, In the Roland Garros draw, he could fall to the side of the Serbian box and have to face him in the semifinals.

Djokovic, in a risky decision, will play the week before the Grand Slam in Belgrade, in another tournament organized in his club. “I hope to play a few more games to get to Paris ready for the Rock And Roll. I found the game, a boost to my confidence on clay. I just have to maintain that level and reach the peak in Paris. Playing at home and with my audience I hope to feed myself with energy “, warned the Balkan, who only has one title in his windows at Roland Garros, the one in 2016, and He is eager to show that in his fight to also be the greatest in history (he has 18 Grand Slam) he is capable of meeting the challenge of defeating Nadal in his sanctuary.


Rival Tournament Year
2021 Roma Djokovic
2021 Barcelona Tsitsipas
2020 Roland Garros Djokovic
2019 Roland Garros Thiem
2019 Roma Djokovic
2018 Roland Garros Thiem
2018 Rome Zverev
2018 Barcelona Tsitsipas
2018 Monte Carlo Nishikori
2017 Roland Garros Wawrinka
2017 Madrid Thiem
2017 Barcelona Thiem
2017 Montecarlo Ramos
2016 Barcelona Nishikori
2016 Montecarlo Monfils
2015 Hamburg Fognini